This project brings together leading European groups working in the area of kinetic modelling of space plasma to enhance and accelerate the effective scientific exploitation of existing space plasma data sets and to maximize the scientific return of future space missions, both European and international. The fundamental concept of the project is to take advantage in the European context of the synergies between space plasma modelling and data analysis. At the present time there is a vast store of collected data from robotic space plasma missions and also an increasing awareness that kinetic processes at small length scales and short time scales are crucial for a proper understanding of the fundamental processes which govern the dynamics of heliospheric plasmas from the solar corona outwards.
The top level aims of this project are:
(1) To provide a focus for the increased use of kinetic simulations in enhancing space data analysis for European Space Agency (ESA) missions such as Cluster, Cassini, Ulysses, Helios, BepiColombo, and Solar Orbiter, but also for international missions such as Themis, MMS, Solar Probe Plus, etc.;
(2) To take forward the state of the art in research using kinetic plasma simulations of space plasma systems, so that new models are developed and exploited allowing the synergies between data analysis and code validation to emerge; and
(3) To improve our knowledge and understanding of the Sun to Earth plasma system, and fundamental processes such as turbulence, shocks, particle acceleration and reconnection, which have relevance for other astrophysical environments.