November 06, 2016

Crack Discovered in Earth's Magnetic Shield -- Still Could Be Unstable a Year Later


The GRAPES-3 muon telescope, the largest and most sensitive cosmic ray monitor recorded a burst of galactic cosmic rays that indicated a crack in the Earth's magnetic shield. Credit: TIFR
Posted: 06 Nov 2016 09:44 AM PST

Source - Science Daily

by Science Daily Staff Writer, November 3rd 2016

The GRAPES-3 muon telescope recorded a burst of galactic cosmic rays of about 20 GeV, on 22 June 2015 lasting for two hours. The burst occurred when a giant cloud of plasma ejected from the solar corona, and moving with a speed of about 2.5 million kilometers per hour struck our planet, causing a severe compression of Earth's magnetosphere from 11 to 4 times the radius of Earth. It triggered a severe geomagnetic storm that generated aurora borealis, and radio signal blackouts in many high latitude countries.