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Fraser
2005-Dec-05, 08:21 PM
SUMMARY: Scientists from NASA and the National Science Foundation have created a new way to view the Earth's atmosphere during space storms. These large-scale storms resemble weather cold fronts that result from plumes of electrified plasma that flash across the Earth's ionosphere. These plumes used to seem like random events, but scientists have gotten pretty good at predicting them now, using a fleet of spacecraft. For the first time, they can now directly connect plasma observed in the atmosphere with these plumes that can extend thousands of kilometres into space.

View full article (http://www.universetoday.com/am/publish/nasa_nsf_atmosphere.html)
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iantresman
2005-Dec-05, 11:40 PM
What's a "plasma plume"? More details at Earth's Plasma Plume Unveiled (http://science.nasa.gov/ssl/pad/sppb/presentations/plasma_plume.html).

This is connected with Earth's plasma fountain (http://science.nasa.gov/ssl/pad/sppb/presentations/bullet3.html) which in turn reminds me of the Ice Volcanoes on Enceladus (http://www.universetoday.com/am/publish/fountains_of_enceladus.html?29112005) which I speculated in the discussion thread (http://www.bautforum.com/showthread.php?p=613274#post613583) looked like a "Corona Discharge from a Wire (http://hypertextbook.com/physics/electricity/conductors/)" (first image).

Both the plasma plumes and Ice Volcanoes on Enceladus also seem to resemble ionospheric Birkeland currents that accelerate ions upwards. See:

Magnetosphere Ionosphere Interactions - Near-Earth Manifestations of the Plasma Universe (1988) Falthammar, C. G.
Abstract (http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-bib_query?1988Ap&SS.144..105F) | In full (http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu//full/seri/Ap%2BSS/0144//0000114.000.html)

See section 4: "The extraction of ionospheric ions is related to the Birkeland currents both directly through exchange of charge carriers and indirectly by parallel and perpendicular ion acceleration mechanisms driven by the Birkeland currents."

And see also:

Filamentation of Volcanic Plumes on the Jovian Satellite Io,
Anthony L. Peratt and A. J. Dessler, Astrophys. Space Sci. 144, pp. 451-461, 1988
Abstract (http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-bib_query?bibcode=1988Ap%26SS.144..451P&db_key=AST &data_type=HTML&format=&high=42ca922c9c04568) | In full (http://articles.adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-iarticle_query?1988Ap%26SS.144..451P)

Regards,
Ian Tresman

iantresman
2009-Apr-22, 06:20 PM
This recent news items looks consistent:
"Electrically Charged Particles Found in Enceladus’ Plumes (http://www.universetoday.com/2009/04/21/electrically-charged-particles-found-in-enceladus-plumes/)"