Demeter (satellite)

Demeter (satellite)

Demeter (Detection of Electro-Magnetic Emissions Transmitted from Earthquake Regions) is a CNES micro-satellite launched in 2004 with a 2-year planned lifetime, for developing earthquake prediction. The satellite measures ionospheric disturbances like ion density and extremely low frequency (ELF) changes in the Earth's magnetic field. The satellite is equipped with a segmented Langmuir probe acts as a direction plasma-ion detector. The probe is divided into 7 disc on a sperical tip rod the rod is also a probe. When combined the discs act as a directional ion sensor.

Some researchers claim that the initial results look very promising while others remain skeptical. A correlation of detection of low frequency electromagnetic waves and ionosphere changes with seismic activity around the world was observed. Moreover, a strong signal (increase in ionospheric electron density and decrease in ionospheric electron temperature) was seen on August 29, 2004 while orbiting over southern Japan, just seven days before a 7.1 magnitude earthquake which occurred in that part of Japan on September 5.

A private company has been formed in Palo Alto, California with the goal of promoting earthquake prediction using satellite data and launching similar satellites.

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