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Van Allen radiation belt

The Van Allen radiation belt is a torus of energetic charged particles (i.e. a plasma) around Earth, trapped by Earth's magnetic field.

When the belts "overload", particles strike the upper atmosphere and fluoresce, causing the polar aurora.

Note: This article excerpts material from the Wikipedia article "Van Allen radiation belt", which is released under the GNU Free Documentation License.

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last updated on 2014-10-22 at 9:48 am EDT

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Solar Flare Radiation Pounds Earth

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AP (Jan. 25, 2012) Radiation from the biggest solar storm since 2005 is pounding the earth. The radiation could potentially disrupt satellites, but no disruptions have been reported.
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NASA 360: Stories of the Solar System: Outer Planets

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