Heliophysical : A broadening of the concept "geophysical," extending the connections from the Earth to the Sun & interplanetary space. On the 50th anniversary of the International Geophysical Year, the 2007 IHY activities will build on the success of IGY 1957 by continuing its legacy of system-wide studies of the extended heliophysical domain.

IHY's Objectives: How they link to our science?

IHY builds on the success of the International Geophysical Year and the previous International Polar Years. We now extend our global studies out into the Heliosphere and incorporate the drivers of geophysical change into the global system. As we approach the "new frontier" of the heliopause and interstellar space, our heritage clearly extends back to previous International Years:


The Primary Objectives of IHY are :

IHY's priorities are set via its three primary objectives. The first objective, "Advancing our Understanding of the Heliophysical Processes that Govern the Sun, Earth and Heliosphere," focuses on our scientific activities.

The second objective, "Continuing the tradition of international research and advancing the legacy on the 50th anniversary of the International Geophysical Year," refers to our commitment to preserving the history and legacy of the IGY and our cooperation with other IGY anniversary programs.

The third objective, "Demonstrating the Beauty, Relevance and Significance of Space and Earth Science to the World" reminds us of the tremendous opportunity in 2007-8 for outreach and education.

In order to satisfy our first objective, we have established a set of Science Goals. Scientists from each of the relevant scientific disciplines will participate in a wide variety of IHY Coordinated Investigation Programmes, driving towards a more complete understanding of heliophysical universal processes. We have divided the universal processes into five primary themes to facilitate analysis and discussion.  

Science Goals

The IHY science team has developed a set of science goals. These were defined so that we focus on the unique scientific and educational opportunities provided by IHY, with the goal of establishing the future direction and focus of heliophysical research.

The goals of IHY are:

Scientific Disciplines

IHY's scientific activities will be organized via Coordinated Investigation Programmes (CIPs). We will drive towards a more complete understanding of the universal processes that govern the Sun, Earth, planets and heliosphere. This will involve scientists from a variety of disciplines:

The analysis and discussion of the CIPs will focus on the fundamental underlying physics of each phenomenon, and will facilitate discussion between the different disciplines by focusing on the relationships between these phenomena and the commonalities in the physical processes. This will allow researchers to plan and participate in cross-disciplinary studies, culminating in a greater understanding of fundamental universal processes.

reference : NASA IHY 2007 web site