Researchers build New Technique to Forecast Geomagnetic Storms

This Is an artist’s depiction of solar wind particles interacting with Earth’s magnetosphere. Sizes aren’t to scale.

The Earth’s magnetic field extends from pole to pole and can be firmly Influenced by solar wind in sunlight. This”end” is a flow of charged particles continuously expelled from the sun’s surface. Occasional unexpected flashes of brightness called solar flares release much more particles to the end. From time to time, the flares are accompanied by coronal mass ejections that ship plasma into space.

The resulting level of particles travels countless miles In the sun to the Earth. When they arrive , the particles wreak havoc upon the planet’s magnetic field. The end result can be amazing but also harmful: auroras and geomagnetic storms. The storms are severe and interfere with lots of significant technologies, such as GPS indicating and satellite communications. They can also lead to damage to surface electric grids. Solar activity seems arbitrary, which makes it hard for us to predict such storms.

From the diary Chaos, by AIP Publishing, a set of researchers From Europe, headed by Reik Donner in Potsdam Institute for Climate Impact Research in Germany, reports a new way of assessing magnetic field information that may offer better short-term forecasting of geomagnetic storms. This new method is based on a technique designed for strategies in a country far from equilibrium. Earth’s magnetic field matches this paradigm since the area is pushed far from equilibrium by the solar wind. Systems which are far from balance frequently experience abrupt changes, like the abrupt transition from a quiescent state to a storm.

The researchers used hourly prices of this Disturbance storm-time, Or Dst, indicator. Dst values provide the typical deviation of the horizontal part of the Earth’s magnetic field in the usual price. This deviation happens when a big burst of charged particles stems from sunlight and weakens the area created by the Earth. The Dst values form one stream of numbers called a time string. The time series information can then be recast to a 2D or 3D image by copying one information point against the other at a predetermined amount of time to the future for predicting.

Here, the writers created a diagram Called a recurrence plot out of The researched data. The recurrence plot is a range of dots usually distributed nonuniformly through the chart. The writers used their information to take a look in a set of geomagnetic storms which happened in 2001 from big solar flares a couple days ahead of the storm.

They used a technique Called recurrence quantification analysis to Reveal that extended diagonal lines in those recurrence plots signify greater Predictable geomagnetic behaviour. The procedure reported here is Particularly well-suited to differentiate between different kinds of Geomagnetic field changes. The method enables researchers to Characterize these gaps using a precision not previously attained.

Nicolas Blanc
Nicolas Blanc
Nicola has over six years experience as a educator, ecologist, zoologist and botanist. He has a B.S. from Cornell University, and a Ph.D. in biology from Mcmaster University in Hamilton. You can contact Nick via his email Nicolas or through Twitter and linkedin

Check out our latest