NASA Stereo satellites launch

NASA Stereo satellites launch

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Credit: NASA/SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY

Caption: NASA Stereo satellites launch. The two satellites are being launched on a single rocket from Cape Canaveral, Florida, USA, on 27 October 2006. One satellite will orbit the Sun just ahead of the Earth, with the other orbiting just behind the Earth. Images of the Sun taken by both satellites will be combined to form three dimensional images. The mission will study coronal mass ejections (CMEs), solar storms that cause violent eruptions from the Sun's surface that travel outwards at hundreds of kilometres per second. CMEs can damage electrical equipment aboard satellites and spacecraft, and cause powerful magnetic storms in the Earth's atmosphere that disrupt power supplies and communications.

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