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Adrastea

Overview page. Subjects: Earth Sciences and Geography — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

The second-closest satellite of Jupiter, distance 128 980 km, orbital period 0.298 days; also known as Jupiter XV. Adrastea is 20 × 16 × 14 km in size. It was discovered in 1979 with the...

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airglow

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

A weak background emission of light over the whole sky, resulting mainly from the excitation of atmospheric oxygen at an altitude of around 100 km by solar radiation; also known as nightglownull...

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Alfvén wave

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Earth Sciences and Geography.

Magnetohydrodynamic waves that are produced by coupling forces between the geomagnetic field and highly conductive fluids. Alfvén waves travel along magnetic field lines when jets of highly...

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Amalthea

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Earth Sciences and Geography.

The jovian satellite with the closest orbit to Jupiter. Its surface colour is reddish, apparently because of sulphur emitted from Io. Its diameter is 189 km (262 × 146 × 134 km), the...

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anorthosite

Overview page. Subjects: Earth Sciences and Geography — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

Plutonic rock composed almost entirely of plagioclase feldspar (90% or more) which may be oligoclase, andesine, labradorite, or bytownite. These rocks occur most frequently in Precambrian...

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Aqua

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

A NASA polar-orbiting satellite, part of the Earth Observing System, the second to be launched (after the Terra satellite) on 4 May 2002. It is primarily designed to monitor the Earth's...

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Atlas

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Earth Sciences and Geography.

One of the lesser satellites of Saturn, discovered in 1980 by Voyager 1, with a radius measuring 18.5 × 17.2 × 13.5 km; visual albedo 0.9.

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aubrite

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Earth Sciences and Geography.

An enstatite pyroxene-rich, achondritic meteorite that is poor in calcium. The enstatite, which often forms large crystals, has very low FeO/(FeO + MgO) ratios, Aubrites may contain up to...

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Aura

Overview page. Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.

A NASA polar-orbiting satellite, part of the Earth Observing System, the third to be launched (after the Terra and Aqua satellites). Its principal mission is to monitor atmospheric...

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aurora

Overview page. Subjects: Astronomy and Astrophysics — Meteorology and Climatology.

An emission of light from the Earth's high atmosphere, caused principally by oxygen atoms or nitrogen molecules that are excited by electrons accelerated within the magnetosphere. The...

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