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Solar Storm Hits Earth’s Magnetic Field

March 17, 2015  - By
A G4 (Severe) geomagnetic storm was observed today at 07/1358 UTC (09:58 am EDT). This is the response to a pair of CMEs observed leaving the Sun on 15 March. Shown here is a model depiction of where the aurora is likely visible. Storm conditions are forecast to persist for the next several hours before beginning to wane down towards the end of the UT day. (Courtesy of NOAA)

A G4 (Severe) geomagnetic storm was observed today at 07/1358 UTC (09:58 a.m. EDT). This is the response to a pair of CMEs observed leaving the Sun on March 15. Shown here is a model depiction of where the aurora is likely visible. Storm conditions are forecast to persist for the next several hours before beginning to wane down towards the end of the UT day. (Courtesy of NOAA)

A G4 (severe) geomagnetic storm is now taking place, the most powerful solar storm of the current solar cycle, reports Discovery.com.

Initially triggered by the impact of a coronal mass ejection (CME) hitting our planet’s magnetosphere, a relatively mild geomagnetic storm erupted at around 04:30 UT (12:30 a.m. EDT), but it has since become a severe G4-class geomagnetic storm. Bright auroras were sighted over several northern-tier U.S. states including Minnesota, Wisconsin, Montana, the Dakotas and Washington. The storm could continue for many hours as Earth passes through the turbulent wake of the CME.

Storm conditions are forecast to persist for the next several hours before beginning to wane down towards the end of the UT day.

Not all types of solar activity (sun spots, solar flares, solar burst, and solar radiation) affect GPS receiver operations. Geomagnetic storms, however, can cause problems for GPS receivers if the storms are powerful enough.

The solar cycle is about 11 years long, during which the sun waxes and wanes in magnetic activity.

Below are ionospheric charts from Missouri, Washington State and New England.

Missouri ionosphere chart during the March 17 geomagnetic storm.

Missouri ionosphere chart during the March 17 geomagnetic storm.

Washington ionosphere chart

Washington ionosphere chart during the March 17 geomagnetic storm.

New England ionosphere chart during the March 17 geomagnetic storm.

New England ionosphere chart during the March 17 geomagnetic storm.

This article is tagged with and posted in GNSS, Latest News, Survey

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