South African NMs

The neutron monitors at Hermanus, Potchefstroom, SANAE (two instruments) and Tsumeb are under the authority of the Centre for Space Research at the Potchefstroom Campus of the North-West University. These monitors provide a unique latitudinal chain of recorders from Antarctica to near the equator.

Hermanus, South Africa

Hermanus is a town at sea level close to the southern point of Africa. Currently, the 12NM64 is attended by SANSA (South African National Space Agency), and it is the oldest continuously operating neutron monitor.

South African National Space Agency, Hermanus
South African National Space Agency, Hermanus

Specifications:
Detector
Standard 12-NM64 neutron monitor
Geographic latitude
34.43° S
Geographic longitude
19.23° E
Altitude
26 m asl
Effective vertical cutoff rigidity
4.58 GV
In continous operation since
1957
Detailed station information:
1957 - 1964
1964 - 1972
Aug 1972 - Dec 1972
January 1973 - present

Potchefstroom, South Africa

The 15-IGY is situated on the roof of the physics building of the Potchefstroom Campus of the North-West University.

NM hut on top of physics building
Monitor hut on the roof of the physics building

Specifications:
Detector
Standard 12-NM64 neutron monitor
Geographic latitude
26.68° S
Geographic longitude
27.09° E
Altitude
1351 m asl
Effective vertical cutoff rigidity
6.94 GV
In continous operation since
1971
Detailed station information:
January 1971 - present

SANAE, Antarctica

The first SANAE base was occupied in December 1959. Since then there have been SANAE II and SANAE III bases. The fourth South African research base in Antarctica, SANAE IV, was built on top of a rocky outcrop, at Vesleskarvet. This base is approximately 80 km from the edge of the continent and 170 km from the edge of the ice shelf.
The research programme at SANAE (South African National Antarctic Expedition) is part of the government’s Antarctic Programme, SANAP (South African National Antarctic Programme).

SANAE IV base
SANAE IV base

Specifications:
Geographic latitude
71° 40'; S
Geographic longitude
02° 51'; W
Altitude
856 m asl
Effective vertical cutoff rigidity
0.73 GV
In continous operation since
1964
Detailed station information SNAE:
Detector
Standard 6-NM64 neutron monitor
March 1964 - December 1994
April 1997 - present
Detailed station information SANB:
Detector
4NMD neutron monitor
May 1971 - December 1994
April 1997 - present

Tsumeb, Namibia

The 18NM64 neutron monitor operates at a research station, established by the Max Planck Institue for Aeronomy in 1957 for ionospheric observations during the IGY. Presently, the station is maintained by the Geological Survey of Namibia. The station is situated about 12 kilometers north-west from the town of Tsumeb, in the northern part of Namibia.

Tsumeb Geophysical Station, Namibia
Tsumeb Geophysical Station, Namibia

Specifications:
Detector
Standard 18-NM64 neutron monitor
Geographic latitude
19.20° S
Geographic longitude
17.58° E
Altitude
1240 m asl
Effective vertical cutoff rigidity
9.15 GV
In continous operation since
1976
Detailed station information:
December 1976 - present

Contact person: helena.kruger@nwu.ac.za