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14 January 2020
Final images from Cassini spacecraft
For the last leg of its journey, Cassini was put on a particularly daring orbit passing between Saturn and its rings which brought it closer to Saturn than ever before. This allowed scientists to obtain images of Saturn’s ultraviolet auroras in unprecedented resolution. The new observations are detailed in two new studies published in the AGU journals.
26 December 2019
Forces from Earth’s spin may spark earthquakes and volcanic eruptions at Mount Etna
A new study suggests that polar motion and subsequent shifts in Earth’s crust may increase volcanic activity. “I find it quite exciting to know that while climate drives Earth’s spin, its rotation can also drive volcanoes and seismicity,” said Sébastien Lambert, a geophysicist at Paris Observatory in France and lead author of the study. The new findings, however, don’t allow scientists to forecast volcanic activity.
12 December 2019
Newfound Martian Aurora Actually the Most Common; Sheds Light on Mars’ Changing Climate
A type of Martian aurora first identified by NASA’s MAVEN spacecraft in 2016 is actually the most common form of aurora occurring on the Red Planet, according to new results from the mission. The aurora is known as a proton aurora and can help scientists track water loss from Mars’ atmosphere.
4 October 2019
Extreme solar storms may be more frequent than previously thought
New research in AGU’s journal Space Weather indicates storms like the 1859 Carrington Event are not as rare as scientists thought and could happen every few decades, seriously damaging modern communication and navigation systems around the globe.
5 September 2019
Making sense of Saturn’s impossible rotation
Saturn may be doing a little electromagnetic shimmy and twist which has been throwing off attempts by scientists to determine how long it takes for the planet to rotate on its axis, according to a new study.
27 August 2019
Streaks in Aurora Found to Map Features in Earth’s Radiation Environment
A special kind of streaked aurora has been found to track disturbances in near-Earth space from the ground. Known as structured diffuse aurora, it was recently discovered, with the help of NASA spacecraft and instruments, that these faint lights in the night sky can map the edges of the Van Allen radiation belts — hazardous concentric bands of charged particles encircling Earth.
Cluster and XMM-Newton pave the way for SMILE
The Solar wind-Magnetosphere-Ionosphere Link Explorer (SMILE) mission is still four years away from launch, but scientists are already using existing ESA satellites, such as the XMM-Newton X-ray observatory and the Cluster mission studying Earth’s magnetosphere, to pave the way for this pioneering venture.
21 June 2019
Northern lights’ social networking reveals true scale of magnetic storms
Magnetic disturbances caused by phenomena like the northern lights can be tracked by a ‘social network’ of ground-based instruments, according to a new study from the University of Warwick.
23 April 2019
Aurora create speed bumps in space
A new study finds a type of high-altitude aurora are responsible, at least in part, for moving pockets of air high into the atmosphere where they can cause drag on passing satellites.
20 February 2019
Earth’s atmosphere stretches out to the Moon – and beyond
A recent discovery based on observations by the ESA/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, SOHO, shows that the gaseous layer that wraps around Earth reaches up to 630,000 km away, or 50 times the diameter of our planet.