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The Spring 2011 issue of The Earth Scientist is focused on modernizing seismology education. Thanks to IRIS, you can download this issue for free as a pdf. Print copies are available in our online store.

Space Weather and the Sun-Earth System

†††Space weather begins at the Sun and its ever-expanding atmosphere. From the human perspective, things get interesting when the solar wind reaches Earth's magnetosphere and interacts with our planet's upper atmosphere. The difference between quiet and active times in the 11-year sunspot cycle profoundly influences the character of space weather at Earth and throughout our Solar System.

The <a href="/earth/Magnetosphere/overview.html&edu=elem">magnetic field of the
Earth</a> is
surrounded in a region called the magnetosphere, which is much larger
than the Earth itself. The magnetosphere prevents most of the particles from
the sun, carried in <a href="/sun/solar_wind.html&edu=elem">solar
wind</a>,
from hitting the Earth.<p><small><em> Image courtesy of Windows to the Universe.</em></small></p>

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Windows to the Universe, a project of the National Earth Science Teachers Association, is sponsored in part by the National Science Foundation and NASA, our Founding Partners (the American Geophysical Union and American Geosciences Institute) as well as through Institutional, Contributing, and Affiliate Partners, individual memberships and generous donors. Thank you for your support! NASA AGU AGI NSF