The big picture

A weather satellite that spies on space storms is giving researchers their first glimpse of the solar wind as it buffets the bubble of diffuse ionised gas around the Earth. NASA’s IMAGE spacecraft, which has antennas longer than the Empire State Building is tall, uses radio pulses to image the plasmasphere. Its pictures, the first of which were released last week, will let researchers watch magnetic storms and the aurora borealis from space. “It will revolutionise our study of the magnetosphere,
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