magnetosphere

A Natural Planetary Defense Against Solar Storms

by David Dickinson March 6, 2014

Want to stay on top of all the space news? Follow @universetoday on Twitter Planetary shields up: solar storms inbound… Researchers at NASA’s Goddard Spaceflight Center and the Massachusetts Institute of Technology have identified a fascinating natural process by which the magnetosphere of our fair planet can — to use a sports analogy — “shot […]

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Voyager 1: Is It In or Is It Out?

by Jason Major August 15, 2013

Nearly 18.7 billion kilometers from Earth — about 17 light-hours away — NASA’s Voyager 1 spacecraft is just about on the verge of entering interstellar space, a wild and unexplored territory of high-energy cosmic particles into which no human-made object has ever ventured. Launched in September 1977, Voyager 1 will soon become the first spacecraft […]

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NASA Probes Play the Music of Earth’s Magnetosphere

by Jason Major September 18, 2012

Launched on August 30, 2012, NASA’s twin Radiation Belt Storm Probe (RBSP) satellites have captured recordings of audible-range radio waves emitted by Earth’s magnetosphere. The stream of chirps and whistles heard in the video above consist of 5 separate occurrences captured on September 5 by RBSP’s Electric and Magnetic Field Instrument Suite and Integrated Science […]

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New Satellites Will Tighten Knowledge of Earth’s Radiation Belts

by Jason Major August 14, 2012

Surrounding our planet like vast invisible donuts (the ones with the hole, not the jelly-filled kind) are the Van Allen radiation belts, regions where various charged subatomic particles get trapped by Earth’s magnetic fields, forming rings of plasma. We know that the particles that make up this plasma can have nasty effects on spacecraft electronics […]

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Incoming! CME On Its Way Toward Earth

by Jason Major July 13, 2012

As you read this, a huge cloud of charged solar particles is speeding toward our planet, a coronal mass ejection resulting from the X1.4-class flare that erupted from sunspot 1520 on July 12. The CME is expected to collide with Earth’s magnetic field on Saturday, potentially affecting satellite operations and tripping alarms on power grids, […]

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