Latest Solar wind Stories

2009-10-15 07:40:00

The Moon is a big sponge that absorbs electrically charged particles given out by the Sun. These particles interact with the oxygen present in some dust grains on the lunar surface, producing water. This discovery, made by the ESA-ISRO instrument SARA onboard the Indian Chandrayaan-1 lunar orbiter, confirms how water is likely being created on the lunar surface. It also gives scientists an ingenious new way to take images of the Moon and any other airless body in the Solar System. The lunar...

2009-09-29 12:30:00

Planning a trip to Mars? Take plenty of shielding. According to sensors on NASA's ACE (Advanced Composition Explorer) spacecraft, galactic cosmic rays have just hit a Space Age high. "In 2009, cosmic ray intensities have increased 19% beyond anything we've seen in the past 50 years," says Richard Mewaldt of Caltech. "The increase is significant, and it could mean we need to re-think how much radiation shielding astronauts take with them on deep-space missions." The cause of the surge is solar...

2009-09-17 09:21:46

Challenging conventional wisdom, new research finds that the number of sunspots provides an incomplete measure of changes in the Sun's impact on Earth over the course of the 11-year solar cycle. The study, led by scientists at the National Center for Atmospheric Research (NCAR) and the University of Michigan, finds that Earth was bombarded last year with high levels of solar energy at a time when the Sun was in an unusually quiet phase and sunspots had virtually disappeared. "The Sun...

2009-09-10 09:50:00

UCLA atmospheric scientists have discovered a previously unknown basic mode of energy transfer from the solar wind to the Earth's magnetosphere. The research, federally funded by the National Science Foundation, could improve the safety and reliability of spacecraft that operate in the upper atmosphere. "It's like something else is heating the atmosphere besides the sun. This discovery is like finding it got hotter when the sun went down," said Larry Lyons, UCLA professor of atmospheric and...

2009-09-01 10:59:59

Researchers at the University of Warwick have found what could be the signal of ideal wave "surfing" conditions for individual particles within the massive turbulent ocean of the solar wind.  The discovery could give a new insight into just how energy is dissipated in solar system sized plasmas such as the solar wind and could provide significant clues to scientists developing  fusion power which relies on plasmas.The research, led by Khurom Kiyanai and  Professor Sandra...

2009-08-31 14:35:00

Magnetic reconnection could be the Universe's favorite way to make things explode. It operates anywhere magnetic fields pervade space--which is to say almost everywhere. On the sun magnetic reconnection causes solar flares as powerful as a billion atomic bombs. In Earth's atmosphere, it fuels magnetic storms and auroras. In laboratories, it can cause big problems in fusion reactors. It's ubiquitous. The problem is, researchers can't explain it. The basics are clear enough. Magnetic lines of...

2009-08-20 10:00:00

On September 29, the MESSENGER spacecraft will pass by Mercury for the third time, flying 141.7 miles above the planet's rocky surface for a final gravity assist that will enable it to enter orbit about Mercury in 2011. This encounter will also provide new observational opportunities for MESSENGER's Magnetometer, designed to determine the structure and origin of Mercury's intrinsic magnetic field. The comparison of magnetosphere observations from MESSENGER's first flyby in January 2008 with...

2009-08-18 09:14:07

The mystery of why temperatures in the sun's outer atmosphere are higher than near the sun's surface may have been solved by Japan's Hinode satellite. James Klimchuk, an astrophysicist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center's Solar Physics Laboratory, says new observations by that satellite have revealed why temperatures in the solar corona, the sun's outer atmosphere, soar to several million degrees Kelvin -- much higher than temperatures nearer the sun's surface. The answer is nanoflares --...

2009-07-17 07:10:00

Using data from the Cluster mission scientists have discovered a mechanism that can account for the heating of the solar wind. Cluster data were used to successfully discriminate between a number of theoretical models and, for the time periods analyzed, a remarkable agreement was found with one model in particular. This result may be applicable in other astrophysical contexts such as the heating of the solar corona. This discovery was highlighted in the June 12, 2009 issue of Physical Review...

2009-06-30 14:00:00

Scientists said goodbye to the Ulysses solar probe on Tuesday, following 18 years of activity. "Ulysses has taught us more than we ever expected about the sun and the way it interacts with the space surrounding it," said Richard Marsden, Ulysses project manager with the European Space Agency (ESA). Named for the Latin translation of Odysseus, after Dante's Inferno, the veteran solar probe has been retrieving data for more than 18 and 1/2 years - four times longer than scientists had...

Latest Solar wind Reference Libraries

Solar Physics
2012-05-02 19:16:53

Solar Physics is a journal for solar and solar-stellar research and the study of solar terrestrial physics. Founded in 1967 by solar physicist Cornelis de Jager and publisher D. Reidel, the journal treats all aspects of solar physics, ranging from the internal structure of the Sun and its evolution, to outer corona and solar wind in interplanetary space. Solar Physics has four more than forty years been the principal journal for publications of fundamental research on the Sun. It is...

Ring Current
2004-10-19 04:45:44

Ring Current -- A ring current is an electric current carried by charged particles trapped in a planet's magnetosphere. It is caused by the longitudinal drift of energetic (10-200 keV) particles. Earth's Ring Current Earth's ring current is responsible for geomagnetic storms. The ring current system consists of a band, at a distance of 3-5 RE(1), which lies in the equatorial plane and circulates clockwise around the Earth (when viewed from the north). The particles of this region...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Heliopause -- The heliopause is the boundary where our Sun's solar wind is stopped by the interstellar medium. The solar wind blows a "bubble" in the interstellar medium (the rareified hydrogen and helium gas that permeates the galaxy). The point where the solar wind's strength is no longer great enough to push back the interstellar medium is known as the heliopause, and is often considered to be the outer "border" of the solar system. The distance to the heliopause is not precisely...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Corona -- The corona is the luminous "atmosphere" of the Sun extending millions of kilometers into space, most easily seen during a total solar eclipse. An interesting feature of the corona is the fact that it is much hotter than the visible "surface" of the Sun; the photosphere is approximately 6000°C compared to the corona at over one million °C. The corona is much less dense than the photosphere, however, and so produces less light. The exact mechanism by which the corona is...

2004-10-19 04:45:41

Aurora -- The Polar Aurora are natural displays of light in the sky that can be seen with the unaided eye only at night. An auroral display in the Northern Hemisphere is called the aurora borealis, or the northern lights; in the Southern Hemisphere it is called the aurora australis. Auroras are the most visible effect of the sun's activity on the earth's atmosphere. The beautiful and often eerie curtains of light in the night time sky have been observed by people for millennia. An aurora...

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Word of the Day
  • A murmuring sound; a rushing or whistling sound, like that of the wind; a deep sigh.
  • A gentle breeze; a waft; a breath.
  • Any rumor that engages general attention.
  • A cant or whining mode of speaking, especially in preaching or praying; the chant or recitative characteristic of the old Presbyterians in Scotland.
  • To make a rushing, whistling, or sighing sound; emit a hollow murmur; murmur or sigh like the wind.
  • To breathe in or as in sleep.
  • To utter in a whining or monotonous tone.
According to the OED, from the 16th century, this word is 'almost exclusively Scots and northern dialect until adopted in general literary use in the 19th.'