What kind of magnetic storm with possible northern lights is expected on February 13? | Nature | Society

What kind of magnetic storm with possible northern lights is expected on February 13?  |  Nature |  Society

On Tuesday and Wednesday, February 13-14, the Earth will be subject to a magnetic storm. There is a possibility of northern lights. This was reported on the website of the Solar Astronomy Laboratory of the Institute of Space Research of the Russian Academy of Sciences and the ISSF SB RAS.

What is known about the magnetic storm?

The magnetic storm was the result of a series of solar flares that began on February 9. As a result of solar activity, the star ejected large masses of matter towards the Earth. According to space observations, two clouds of plasma are moving towards our planet, the first of which was ejected on February 10, and the second on February 11.

How strong will it beyay?

According to the forecast, the intensity of the geomagnetic storm will be G1-G2. This is the first or second level of disturbance on a five-point scale, in which serious consequences do not arise.

G1 are minor magnetic storms that can cause slight fluctuations in the electrical grid, slightly affect the operation of satellites, cause auroras and affect the migration routes of birds and animals. G2 are moderate storms that can lead to voltage surges and damage to transformers in northern latitudes, make adjustments to the movement of spacecraft, and cause auroras further from the poles.

During magnetic storms, people may feel worse. In particular, headaches, weakness, pressure surges, and insomnia may occur.

When will the magnetic storm start?

On the afternoon of February 12, laboratory experts reported that, according to the forecast, the front of solar emissions will reach the Earth’s orbit on the night of Monday to Tuesday, and the peak of the magnetic storm is expected in the middle of the day on Tuesday. At the same time, it was clarified that the time of arrival of solar masses to the Earth is determined with limited accuracy, so there is a high probability that the magnetic storm will begin several hours earlier or later than the forecast.

On the afternoon of February 13, experts reported that so far only streams of high-energy protons from a series of solar flares have reached the Earth, and clouds of solar plasma thrown into interplanetary space during the same series of flares have not yet reached our planet. According to the latest data, the beginning of the geomagnetic storm is expected within the current day; the specific time has not been specified.

Will there be northern lights?

Solar flares cause not only magnetic storms on Earth, but also auroras. If the storm had peaked midday on Tuesday, as originally forecast, the chance of auroras in European Russia would have been 20%. At the same time, the Solar Astronomy Laboratory noted: if the peak of magnetic disturbances begins in the dark, in the interval from 21:00 to 01:00 at night, the probability of the northern lights will greatly increase.



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