Intense geomagnetic solar storm affects Earth

Intense geomagnetic solar storm affects Earth
Intense geomagnetic solar storm affects Earth

The intense solar activity generated a large spot on the Astro Rey and seven coronal mass ejections towards Earth in the last seven days, the Institute of Geophysics and Astronomy (IGA) of Cuba said today.

Depending on their magnitude (from G1 to G5), these emissions consisting of plasma explosions and magnetic fields take place from the Sun’s corona and generate geomagnetic storms, explained IGA Geomagnetism specialist María Elena Muñiz.

These phenomena, the expert noted, are capable of affecting shortwave communications, causing drift and inaccuracy in global positioning systems, damaging electrical transmission lines, gas pipelines, mobile telephony and even putting computers out of operation permanently. satellites.

Likewise, they can cause the northern lights at lower geographic latitudes than usual, as is now happening in areas of North America and Europe.

Muñiz highlighted that the current geomagnetic storm reached severe status this Saturday, reaching the maximum category G5, according to data provided by the National Office of Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the United States.

Although the most notable effects are usually recorded at high latitudes, he added, in the particular case of Cuba there are reports of effects on shortwave communications.

Last Friday night, between 10:40 p.m. and 10:50 p.m. local time, an aurora borealis was observed in the Gibara region, in the eastern Cuban province of Holguín.

This is something totally unusual on the island, since the last time a similar event occurred dates back to 1859, when an extremely strong geomagnetic storm, known as the Carrington event, destroyed the telegraph systems, stressed the IGA researcher.

According to the projections issued by different international centers, in the coming days it is very likely that these ejections will continue and the Earth will continue under the influence of this natural phenomenon, which occurs as the peak of maximum activity of the Sun approaches, a cyclic process whose period of repetition is approximately 11 years.

The Institute of Geophysics and Astronomy of Cuba keeps track of the evolution of this geomagnetic storm.

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