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Magnetism and Magnetic Fields

Magnetism is a force field generated by moving electrical charges. An electrical current running through a loop of wire generates a magnetic field. The strength of the field depends on the current and area of the wire loop. Plasma churning through the atmosphere of the Sun drives powerful magnetic fields that sometimes produce cool magnetic storms called sunspots. A magnetic dynamo underneath Earth’s crust generates a magnetic field around Earth.

Radio Programs

Beta Ceti The imprint of a magnetic “fossil” January 12, 2018

Zapped! A dead star zaps a close companion July 5, 2017

Storm Damage Risks from storms on the Sun June 23, 2017

Quiet Sun A long period of rest for the Sun June 22, 2017

Moon and Jupiter Entering Jupiter’s magnetic 'bubble'... May 14, 2016

Coma Berenices Sparkling tresses of stars March 29, 2016

Moon and Saturn A protective bubble for Saturn March 28, 2016

Stellar Whopper The brightest of the bright March 22, 2016

EV Lacertae A tiny star with a big temper October 30, 2015

Making a Magnetar Making a powerful magnet August 5, 2015

Magnetars Powering up some strong magnets August 4, 2015

Featured Images

Supercomputer simulations of Earth's magnetic field

Twist and Flip April 8, 2013

Cassini views Saturn's magnetic field

Solar Sculptor March 1, 2013

A January 23, 2012 solar flare

Restless Sun January 30, 2012

Loopy Sun April 23, 2010