(Image credit: NASA/STEREO)
Earth’s sis planet Venus is experiencing a bout of extreme space weather this week afterward a giant sunspot, non visible from World, expelled an enormous plasma burst toward the scorching-hot planet.
On Mon (Sept. 5),
sun-watching spacecraft spotted a
coronal mass ejection
(CME), a cloud of charged particles erupting from the upper layer of the
sun’due south atmosphere, the corona, sally from behind the sun,
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The CME is the second to have hit
in a week; another one erupted from the sun on Wednesday (Aug. 30) and reached the planet three days later,
just every bit the European Solar Orbiter spacecraft flew past.
Solar Orbiter to expect at Venus’ magnetic field as it swings by the planet
Georgo Ho, a solar physicist at the Johns Hopkins University Practical Physics Laboratory, told SpaceWeather.com that the latest eruption was “no run-of-the-manufacturing plant outcome.”
“I tin can safely say the Sept. 5th consequence is i of the largest (if not THE largest) Solar Energetic Particle (SEP) storms that nosotros have seen so far since Solar Orbiter launched in 2020,” Ho, who is i of the lead investigators of the Energetic Particle Detector Instrument aboard Solar Orbiter, told SpaceWeather.com. “It is at least an gild of magnitude stronger than the radiation storm from last week’s CME.”
The squad operating the magnetometer instrument aboard the spacecraft, however,
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that the CME “appears to have largely missed” Solar Orbiter, although the spacecraft was affected past the energetic particles it delivered.
“In that location was … a very large number of energetic particles from this event and [the magnetometer] experienced xix ‘single issue upsets’ in its memory yesterday,” the magnetometer team said in the tweet. “[The Solar Orbiter magnetometer] is robust to radiation: it automatically corrected the data every bit designed and operated nominally throughout.”
Ho added that the energetic intensity of the charged particles around the spacecraft “has not subsided since the beginning of the storm.”
“This is indicative of a very fast and powerful interplanetary shock, and the inner heliosphere may be filled with these high-energy particles for a long time. I recollect I’ve only seen a couple of these in the last couple solar cycles,” Ho told SpaceWeather.com
(opens in new tab). (The heliosphere is the huge bubble of charged particles and magnetic fields that the sun blows around itself.)
The source of the powerful eruption is believed to be the sunspot region AR3088, which crossed the Earth-facing side of the sun’south disk in August and has likely grown into a much more powerful beast since disappearing from World’s view.
Due to the dominicus’s rotation, the sunspot will face our planet once again next week, SpaceWeather.com said, which ways Earth, as well, may be up for some
Solar Orbiter was built to measure such events, so scientists can inappreciably complain about the battering. As Ho told SpaceWeather.com, “many science papers will be studying this [event] for years to come up.”
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