NEEP602 Fall97 - Lecture 19

What are the Solar Wind Volatiles?

"The Solar Wind is a plasma of chemical elements, expelled as ionized atoms from the atmosphere of the Sun" The Solar Wind Volatiles fall into 2 general classes (Lunar Sourcebook, Cambridge, 1991): 1) Biogenic elements (H, C, and N) 2) Noble gases (He, Ne, Ar, Kr, and Xe) The Solar Wind Volatiles (SWV's) have been "blowing" on the planets (and Moons) of our solar system for some 4.5 billion years. The Solar wind is ionized and therefore is deflected by the Earth's magnetic field. Here's a more detailed description of the solar wind.

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