February 25, 2024

Science – Geomagnetic storms after strong solar flares – Knowledge

Berlin (dpa) – The consequences of violent solar flares may hit the Earth this weekend. The American Space Weather Prediction Center wrote on its website that geomagnetic storms in categories G1 (simple) to G2 (moderate) are expected to occur over the course of Saturday and Sunday.

G2 gusts can therefore, among other things, lead to correction of the spacecraft’s alignment by ground control. In addition, certain types of radio traffic may be affected at higher latitudes. It is also possible to damage the power grid transformers there. The northern lights can also be seen far south of the Arctic region.

According to information, the cause of geomagnetic storms is the so-called coronal mass ejections from the sun on Thursday and Friday. A plasma cloud made up of electrons, protons and certain atomic nuclei is launched into space.

According to the Forecast Center, one of the most powerful solar flares ever recorded occurred on Thursday. The event already affected some radio communications on Thursday.

The Sun’s activity has been increasing again since December 2019. Approximately every eleven years, in the so-called solar cycle, there are phases of weak and strong activity. The sun is currently approaching its maximum.

© dpa-infocom, dpa:231216-99-318239/3

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