Magnetosphere Watch Thread - Pictures - Latest Information -

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posted on May, 11 2009 @ 09:56 PM
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reply to post by Phage
 


Really? looks like MSM would beg to differ with you - see this story

www.foxnews.com...


Scientists have found two large leaks in Earth's magnetosphere, the region around our planet that shields us from severe solar storms.

The leaks are defying many of scientists' previous ideas on how the interaction between Earth's magnetosphere and solar wind occurs: The leaks are in an unexpected location, let in solar particles in faster than expected and the whole interaction works in a manner that is completely the opposite of what scientists had thought.

The findings have implications for how solar storms affect the our planet. Serious storms, which involved charged particles spewing from the sun, can disable satellites and even disrupt power grids on Earth.

• Click here to visit FOXNews.com's Natural Science Center.


OH - go ahead and see this story too from NASA
science.nasa.gov...


A Giant Breach in Earth's Magnetic Field

Dec. 16, 2008: NASA's five THEMIS spacecraft have discovered a breach in Earth's magnetic field ten times larger than anything previously thought to exist. Solar wind can flow in through the opening to "load up" the magnetosphere for powerful geomagnetic storms. But the breach itself is not the biggest surprise. Researchers are even more amazed at the strange and unexpected way it forms, overturning long-held ideas of space physics.

"At first I didn't believe it," says THEMIS project scientist David Sibeck of the Goddard Space Flight Center. "This finding fundamentally alters our understanding of the solar wind-magnetosphere interaction."

The magnetosphere is a bubble of magnetism that surrounds Earth and protects us from solar wind. Exploring the bubble is a key goal of the THEMIS mission, launched in February 2007. The big discovery came on June 3, 2007, when the five probes serendipitously flew through the breach just as it was opening. Onboard sensors recorded a torrent of solar wind particles streaming into the magnetosphere, signaling an event of unexpected size and importance.

Right: One of the THEMIS probes exploring the space around Earth, an artist's concept.
 


"The opening was huge—four times wider than Earth itself," says Wenhui Li, a space physicist at the University of New Hampshire who has been analyzing the data. Li's colleague Jimmy Raeder, also of New Hampshire, says "1027 particles per second were flowing into the magnetosphere—that's a 1 followed by 27 zeros. This kind of influx is an order of magnitude greater than what we thought was possible."

The event began with little warning when a gentle gust of solar wind delivered a bundle of magnetic fields from the Sun to Earth. Like an octopus wrapping its tentacles around a big clam, solar magnetic fields draped themselves around the magnetosphere and cracked it open. The cracking was accomplished by means of a process called "magnetic reconnection." High above Earth's poles, solar and terrestrial magnetic fields linked up (reconnected) to form conduits for solar wind. Conduits over the Arctic and Antarctic quickly expanded; within minutes they overlapped over Earth's equator to create the biggest magnetic breach ever recorded by Earth-orbiting spacecraft.



Above: A computer model of solar wind flowing around Earth's magnetic field on June 3, 2007. Background colors represent solar wind density; red is high density, blue is low. Solid black lines trace the outer boundaries of Earth's magnetic field. Note the layer of relatively dense material beneath the tips of the white arrows; that is solar wind entering Earth's magnetic field through the breach. Credit: Jimmy Raeder/UNH. [larger image]

The size of the breach took researchers by surprise. "We've seen things like this before," says Raeder, "but never on such a large scale. The entire day-side of the magnetosphere was open to the solar wind."

The circumstances were even more surprising. Space physicists have long believed that holes in Earth's magnetosphere open only in response to solar magnetic fields that point south. The great breach of June 2007, however, opened in response to a solar magnetic field that pointed north.

"To the lay person, this may sound like a quibble, but to a space physicist, it is almost seismic," says Sibeck. "When I tell my colleagues, most react with skepticism, as if I'm trying to convince them that the sun rises in the west."


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Here is why they can't believe their ears: The solar wind presses against Earth's magnetosphere almost directly above the equator where our planet's magnetic field points north. Suppose a bundle of solar magnetism comes along, and it points north, too. The two fields should reinforce one another, strengthening Earth's magnetic defenses and slamming the door shut on the solar wind. In the language of space physics, a north-pointing solar magnetic field is called a "northern IMF" and it is synonymous with shields up!

"So, you can imagine our surprise when a northern IMF came along and shields went down instead," says Sibeck. "This completely overturns our understanding of things."

Northern IMF events don't actually trigger geomagnetic storms, notes Raeder, but they do set the stage for storms by loading the magnetosphere with plasma. A loaded magnetosphere is primed for auroras, power outages, and other disturbances that can result when, say, a CME (coronal mass ejection) hits.

The years ahead could be especially lively. Raeder explains: "We're entering Solar Cycle 24. For reasons not fully understood, CMEs in even-numbered solar cycles (like 24) tend to hit Earth with a leading edge that is magnetized north. Such a CME should open a breach and load the magnetosphere with plasma just before the storm gets underway. It's the perfect sequence for a really big event."

Sibeck agrees. "This could result in stronger geomagnetic storms than we have seen in many years."

A video version of this story may be found here. For more information about the THEMIS mission, visit nasa.gov...

SEND THIS STORY TO A FRIEND

Author: Dr. Tony Phillips | Credit: Science@NASA



so you might want to look at the facts before saying something is not true in the future.

Because there IS strange things happening with the magnetosphere - and it is worth keeping an eye on.


[edit on 11-5-2009 by questioningall]




posted on May, 11 2009 @ 09:58 PM
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reply to post by questioningall
 


I thought you didn't trust the MSM.

BTW, like I said, 2007.

The big discovery came on June 3, 2007

From your external quote.

And we did not experience any severe magnetic storms.

[edit on 5/11/2009 by Phage]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 09:59 PM
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Mercury is due to pass in front of the Sun in 2012 , I'm not sure if this could intensify the predicted solar actively . Like a rock being hit by a wave , the wave would be directed out than collapse back in on its self , perhaps directing energy at the Earth . I'm no astrophysics, and I know we're talking about mind boggling distances , just speculations. Plus Mercury doesn't have a molten iron/nickle core. I'm sure there is some scientific literature on Mercury and its interplay with the solar wind and how this affects Earth.

[edit on 11-5-2009 by OpusMarkII]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:02 PM
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reply to post by Phage
 


Notice the dates are from Dec. 2008 NOT 2007 - again are you REALLY going to disregard what NASA has even said about it?



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:03 PM
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reply to post by OpusMarkII
 


What is interesting is Mercury is the only other planet that also has a significant magnetosphere.

[edit on 11-5-2009 by questioningall]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:07 PM
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reply to post by questioningall
 


No.
Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus and Neptune have planetwide magnetospheres.

Venus has a weak, sort of broken up magnetosphere, as does Mars.

[edit on 5/11/2009 by Phage]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:11 PM
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Originally posted by Phage
reply to post by Iamonlyhuman
 


The video (if you ignore the idiot newsguy) says no such thing. Kaku, with his usual flair is casting around "what ifs". Yes, very large solar storms would cause big problems.

The interview is from December of last year. The latest prediction is that the next solar max will occur 2013 and will exhibit low activity, the lowest since 1928.
spaceweather.com...
[edit on 5/11/2009 by Phage]


Although that is an older video, if you listen to his april 24th appearance on the opie and anthony show, he repeats the warning, and talks of a new NASA document about it. I think he talks about this in stronger terms than a 'what-if', he seems to think it is a real possibility. Much of what is in that spaceweather article he repeats, so it seems he has updated his knowledge a little since December, although in the O&A show, he's still saying 2012. The idea that I get, is that even though this may turn out to be a lower intenisty cycle than expected, added with the hole in the earths protective layer may mean it works out quite bad.

www.space.com...

This article from the same time as yours says



But the forecasters note that big individual storms can strike before, during or after any cycle's peak, even if it is weak.

"As with hurricanes, whether a cycle is active or weak refers to the number of storms, but everyone needs to remember it only takes one powerful storm to cause huge problems," said NOAA scientist Doug Biesecker, who chairs the panel. "The strongest solar storm on record occurred in 1859 during another below-average cycle."



[edit on 11/5/2009 by RubberBaron]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:16 PM
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reply to post by RubberBaron
 


There is no hole. The 2007 event was temporary.

Our satellites and power grids are always at risk from a large CME and the risk is always greater at solar max. Yes, there will be a large geomagnetic storm in our future. Just as there will be an asteroidal impact and a major volcanic event. These are things that will happen but there is no way to say when or to prepare for them.

5 years from now or 10 or 100 or 1,000. I see no point in fretting over them.

[edit on 5/11/2009 by Phage]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:19 PM
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Originally posted by Phage
reply to post by RubberBaron
 


There is no hole. The 2007 event was temporary.


Could you give a source for that? The articles I am finding from december 2008 on reputable sites such as

www.space.com...

are still talking about it, as are the ones a previous poster showed from that time from FOX and NASA.


[edit on 11/5/2009 by RubberBaron]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:25 PM
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S&F. Great thread.


Thanks.

Will watch this thread to track the changes.



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:28 PM
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reply to post by RubberBaron
 

science.nasa.gov...

The big discovery came on June 3, 2007, when the five probes serendipitously flew through the breach just as it was opening.

We have no idea how common or rare these events are. They just happened to catch this one soon after they had the tools to identify what was going on.


"The opening was huge—four times wider than Earth itself," says Wenhui Li

Keyword, was. As in "no longer". Not "is".


And it's not as scary as it sounds.

[edit on 5/11/2009 by Phage]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:31 PM
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The earth is surrounded by a magnetosphere, as are the magnetized planets Mercury, Jupiter, Saturn, Uranus, and Neptune. Jupiter's moon Ganymede is magnetized, but too weak to trap solar wind plasma. Mars has patchy surface magnetization.



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:33 PM
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reply to post by questioningall
 


well i guess i'll giveyou half a point for not begging people to read the thread this time. your last "magnestoshpere" thread was somehting like OMG THIS IS SO SERIOUSLY SERIOUS. this is still garbage though. i'm sorry but this is just stupid. this planet has been around for billions of years and you're acting like it's just going to suddenly fall apart.

please quit being chicken little. this is why i hardly even come to this site anymore.



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:35 PM
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reply to post by Phage
 


Thank you, yes I agree after re-reading the article more closely, also when they use the term "The great breach of June 2007"

The article indicates though that another breach could open by a CME at the time, and the space article said that a lower intensity isn't the be all and end all, as the 1859 geomagnetic storms were in a fairly low intensity peak, so I do still consider this of interest, I'm just downgrading it a little



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:35 PM
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Edit to Delete my original post, as I'm too slow to hang....

Anyway, great thread.


-Dev

[edit on 11-5-2009 by DevolutionEvolvd]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:40 PM
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Originally posted by Mozzy
i'm sorry but this is just stupid. this planet has been around for billions of years and you're acting like it's just going to suddenly fall apart.

please quit being chicken little. this is why i hardly even come to this site anymore.


I just re-read the thread, looking for people saying the planet is going to fall apart, and I just don't see it. As far as I can tell the speculation is about possible effects to our electronics/electrical system, which haven't been around for billions of years like the rest of the planet. That is unlikely to mean doom, but if it happened it could be quite a setback.



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:42 PM
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I miss wrote my earlier post and I will edit that post - but I wanted to clarify what I meant in this post first. Mercury is the only other planet with a "significant" magnetosphere as the Earth's.

link: www.windows.ucar.edu...=/mercury/Magnetosphere/magsphere_overview.html


Mercury is the only inner planet other than the Earth that has a significant magnetic field (220 nT). This field, along with the planet's high density and small size relative to the Earth, indicates that it probably has a molten iron core. The magnetic field has two poles, and is tilted in the same direction as Mercury's axis. Mariner 10 observed a shock wave called a "bow shock" in front of the planet, where the planet's magnetic field meets the solar wind



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:45 PM
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Originally posted by questioningall
reply to post by OpusMarkII
 


What is interesting is Mercury is the only other planet that also has a significant magnetosphere.

[edit on 11-5-2009 by questioningall]


Hmmm. This sounds pretty durned significant to me. But maybe I'm easily impressed.

Jupiter's magnetosphere is very special. It is the biggest thing in the entire solar system. Not only is it big enough to hold all of Jupiter's moons, but the sun itself could fit inside. It goes all the way to Saturn. If it could be seen at night, it would be as big in the sky as the full moon.

Source

[edit on 5/11/2009 by Phage]



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:52 PM
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reply to post by Mozzy
 


yes, I referenced that thread and "why" it was done in the OP - so now here is a thread to watch and for people to post what is happening with it.

Oh, sorry if watching reality of many topics is all so "chicken little" to you. But I also understand, since some are not able to really comprehend the truths of situations or even look at odd things that are happening with our Earth. It is hard for those people to accept truths too.

Oh there is NOTHING Chicken Little about watching our magnetosphere, so I guess all the scientist and others who are watching it are also "chicken little" - so then anything going on with the Earth would be considered "chicken little"?

I would say - if these scientific and interesting threads have kept you from coming to ATS often - I am sure other sites have much more appeal to you - I think I saw an all games forum somewhere - you may want to go and check it out.



posted on May, 11 2009 @ 10:53 PM
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Originally posted by Mozzy
reply to post by questioningall
 


well i guess i'll giveyou half a point for not begging people to read the thread this time. your last "magnestoshpere" thread was somehting like OMG THIS IS SO SERIOUSLY SERIOUS. this is still garbage though. i'm sorry but this is just stupid. this planet has been around for billions of years and you're acting like it's just going to suddenly fall apart.

please quit being chicken little. this is why i hardly even come to this site anymore.


Really? And that makes your post........Pointless Garbage. And yes, you are sorry. If you really think this is so stupid then don't post.....

...otherwise....

Try to stay on topic. Instead of personally attacking the poster, try actually thinking, for once, by arguing the post. In other words......Grow Up.

-Dev





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