News By/Courtesy: Saniya Akhtar | 26 Feb 2019 22:29pm IST

According to a new study on observations made more than 20 years ago by ESA/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, a distant cloud of hydrogen atoms that makes up the outermost
part of Earth’s atmosphere extends beyond the moon. The study found that this region known as geocorona, the first image of which was captured by astronauts in 1972 during the Apollo 16 mission, stretches up to 391,474 miles (630,000 kilometers) away. According to the  estimate by scientists, the geocorna stretches to nearly double the distance to the moon. Igor Baliukin of Russia’s Space Research Institute says, “The moon flies through the earth’s atmosphere. We were not aware of it until we dusted off observations made over two decades ago by the SOHO spacecraft.” As the presence of hydrogen in a planet’s outer atmosphere is often a sign of water vapour down near the surface, Jean-Loup Bertaux, co-author and former principal investigator of SWAN said, “This is especially interesting when looking for planets with potential reservoirs of water beyond our solar system.”

Section Editor: Priyanshu Gupta | 26 Feb 2019 22:35pm IST

Tags : #Technology#NASA

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