area of space near an astronomical object

A magnetosphere is a region around an astronomical object, such as a planet. It is the region where charged particles are affected by the object's magnetic field.[1][2] The magnetosphere of the Sun is called the heliosphere. Ions and electrons of the solar wind are deflected by the heliosphere.

Scheme of Earth's magnetosphere. The solar wind comes from left to right

Since a magnetosphere is magnetic, it is invisible. However, the Earth's magnetosphere makes the Aurora Borealis. This is what causes the "Northern Lights" that shimmer in the night sky near the North Pole.


  1. "Magnetospheres". NASA Science. NASA.
  2. Ratcliffe, John Ashworth (1972). An Introduction to the Ionosphere and Magnetosphere. CUP Archive. ISBN 9780521083416.