Cluster hears the heartbeat of magnetic reconnection 02 May 2013 For the first time, scientists have resolved the detailed structure of the core region where magnetic reconnection takes place in the magnetosphere of Earth using unprecedented wave measurements. The study, based on data from ESA's Cluster mission, has mapped different types of electrostatic waves in this region. The waves trace populations of plasma particles that are involved in the different stages of a magnetic reconnection event. Read more
Cluster is currently investigating the Earth's magnetic environment and its interaction with the solar wind in three dimensions. Science output from Cluster greatly advances our knowledge of space plasma physics, space weather and the Sun-Earth connection and has been key in improving the modeling of the magnetosphere and understanding its various physical processes.
Cluster finds source of aurora energy boost 10 April 2013 A new study has revealed that bursty bulk flows - fast streams of plasma launched towards Earth during magnetic substorms - are more important than previously thought and can carry one third of the total energy that brightens aurorae. Read more