High in the sky, 60 to 65 miles above Earth's surface, winds rush through a little understood region of Earth's atmosphere at speeds of 200 to 300 miles per hour.
First noticed in the 1960s, the winds in this jet stream shouldn't be confused with the lower jet stream located around 30,000 feet, through which passenger jets fly and which is reported in weather forecasts. These 2 jet streams are vertically 50 miles apart.
In March 2012, NASA will launch five rockets in approximately five minutes to study these high-altitude winds and their intimate connection to the complicated electrical current patterns that surround Earth. Credit: NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
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Page Last Updated: May 1st, 2014
Page Editor: Holly Zell