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magnetotail


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The part of a planet's magnetosphere that is elongated in the direction of the solar wind (i.e. away from the Sun). The Earth's magnetotail (the geotail) extends beyond the Moon's orbit, and that of Jupiter extends beyond Saturn's orbit. Reconnection between magnetic field lines in the Earth's magnetotail under disturbed geomagnetic conditions results in the acceleration of electrons into the high atmosphere, producing active and sometimes extensive displays of the aurora.

Subjects: Meteorology and Climatology — Astronomy and Astrophysics.


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