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The concept of magnetic reconnection originated with the suggestion by Giovanelli [1946] that particles could be energized during solar flares near nulls in the magnetic field. Hoyle [1949] subsequently proposed that such a process could also act at nulls between the geomagnetic field and the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF) to generate the energized particles responsible for auroral displays. However, the idea of the interconnection of the two magnetic fields, as we know it today, was first presented by Hoyle's student, Dungey [1953, 1961].