Launch Tomorrow for Satellites Set to Solve Earth's Magnetic Mysteries

March 11, 2015 4:29 PM

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A cosmic phenomenon in Earth's magnetic field that is both dazzling and potentially dangerous for people on the surface is the focus of a new scientific mission, scheduled to launch into orbit on Thursday (March 12).

The Magnetsopheric Multiscale mission, or MMS, consists of four satellites that will study a process called magnetic reconnection: the explosive phenomenon that can send powerful bursts of particles hurtling toward Earth, potentially damaging satellites. But magnetic reconnection is also responsible...

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