Could somebody tell me if anything happens to the moon magnetically when it passes through the Earth's magnetotail...
Roughly once every Lunar orbit, the Moon passes through Earth's magnetotail for approximately 6 days. Interaction with the plasma sheet causes the Moon's surface to become negatively charged.
I understand that the moon is primarily volcanic basalt and basalt is interesting in magnetic terms.
[b]The Magnetic Properties of Igneous Rocks from the Ocean Floor[/b]
…”The limited range of submarine igneous rock types examined, and the strong bias towards quenched samples necessitates a supplement to this summary in the form of a discussion of studies of magnetic properties from selected igneous rocks outcropping above sea level. In these studies, serpentinization of ultrabasic rocks has been observed in one case to increase the intensity of magnetization; chloritization and spilitization are confirmed as being magnetically destructive; maghaemitization may have destructive effects; titanomagnetite oxidation variation dominates in magnetic change of basaltic lavas (and some corresponding chemical changes are likely to occur); basaltic intrusives have a much more limited titanomagnetic oxidation range than is generally observed in lavas; and spontaneous demagnetization with time probably exists, at least in basalts.”…
Could the moon become more magnetically active as it passes through the magnetotail's plasma sheet and tug on the cracks in the Earth's magnetosphere allowing for more solar wind to become trapped inside the magnetosphere interacting with upper atmosphere? This would contribute to electric weather.
NASA: "Immense cracks in our planet's magnetic field can remain open for hours, allowing the solar wind to gush through and power stormy space weather.
..."Fortunately, these cracks don't expose Earth's surface to the solar wind. Our atmosphere protects us, even when our magnetic field doesn't. The effects of solar storms are felt mainly in the high upper atmosphere and the region of space around Earth where satellites orbit."...
Thanks in advance for any insight you can give me.