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Business News/ News / Geomagnetic storm hit Earth, ‘dancing shapes and pillars’ appear in sky
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Geomagnetic storm hit Earth, ‘dancing shapes and pillars’ appear in sky

A geomagnetic storm hit the Earth and auroras appeared in the night sky in different parts of the world

Auroras appear after a geomagnetic storm hit Earth (Twitter)Premium
Auroras appear after a geomagnetic storm hit Earth (Twitter)

Earth was hit by a strong geomagnetic storm last evening and it is likely that more will be coming in in the next few days. A G2-class geomagnetic storm was created when a stream of charged particles aka solar wind – flowing from a hole in the Sun -- hit Earth on 4 September. It was when the auroras appeared in different parts of the world. This time, the storm lasted over 24 hours.

According to Speceweather.com, the auroras that speared in the United States (US) due to the geomagnetic storm stretched from New Hampshire to Michigan to Washington.

Twitterrati flooded social media with photos as several auroras appeared in the night sky in different parts of the world. Space weather expert Dr Tamitha Skov said, “Aurora has dropped deep into mid-latitudes & you must look to the south if you're in central Saskatchewan, Canada, or at a similar latitude! We're now at G2 levels. Views possible down to Iowa, Nebraska, Colorado, Idaho, & Oregon. Get ready New Zealand & Tasmania, you're next! (Sic)."

A Twitter user wrote: “GEOMAGNETIC STORM: As predicted, a stream of solar wind hit Earth on Sept. 4th, sparking a G2-class geomagnetic storm. "The sky exploded with dancing shapes and pillars."

“Pinks, purples and reds were the story of last night's stunning aurora in Bird's Hill Park!!" another said.

 

“A SCREAMING GOOD GEOMAGNETIC STORM: A stream of solar wind hit Earth on Sept. 4th, sparking a G2-class geomagnetic storm. When the auroras appeared over Oregon, "even people who didn't know about space weather saw them and started screaming!" one said.

WHAT IS A GEOMAGNETIC STORM?

According to the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA), the Earth's magnetosphere is created by our magnetic field and protects us from most of the particles the sun emits. When a coronal mass ejection (CME) or high-speed stream arrives at Earth, it buffets the magnetosphere.

If the arriving solar magnetic field is directed southward it interacts strongly with the oppositely oriented magnetic field of the Earth. The Earth's magnetic field is then peeled open like an onion allowing energetic solar wind particles to stream down the field lines to hit the atmosphere over the poles.

At the Earth's surface, a magnetic storm is seen as a rapid drop in the Earth's magnetic field strength. This decrease lasts about 6 to 12 hours, after which the magnetic field gradually recovers over a period of several days.

(With inputs from NASA)

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Published: 05 Sep 2022, 02:59 PM IST
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