In the atmosphere

NASA launches two satellites to shine a light on space weather

Conditions on the edge of space can have a major effect on Earth.

Originally Published: 
artist's rendering of ICON ionosphere satellite


Stretching from around 30 miles above the Earth’s surface to the very edge of space is the ionosphere, a region of the atmosphere filled with charged particles.

As the Sun beats down on the upper atmosphere, some particles are ionized, changing conditions in the ionosphere from day to night. It’s also affected by weather on Earth and in space, making the ionosphere extremely turbulent.