Whitepaper #311 in the Decadal Survey for Solar and Space Physics (Heliophysics) 2024-2033. Main topics: space weather applications; basic research. Additional topics: space weather research/applications/operations pipeline; planetary ionospheres / upper atmospheres; […]
We seek an understanding of the processes that shape the evolution of planetary atmospheres as well as those processes that determine how the solar wind interacts with that planet. Ion outflow is a challenging phenomenon to quantify but there are many simple optical techniques that can be used from LEO and GEO to image the extended corona of neutrals and ions around the Earth.