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Featured Collection: Seeing the Invisible (16 Apr 2005)
The space surrounding Earth is not empty, although it appears to be. "Geospace" is, in fact, populated by a rarefied gas of electrically charged particles (plasma) whose motions are controlled by Earth's magnetic field. This region of space, known as the magnetosphere, is the site of fascinating and complex physical processes involving plasmas, electric and magnetic fields, and electrical currents. It is also the medium in which "space weather" occurs -- disturbances driven by solar storms that can adversely affect satellites, navigation and communication systems, and power grids and that can threaten the health and safety of astronauts.
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