Magnetic storm of the second level on a five-point scale will be played over the Earth on May 17, Russian astronomers forecast.
Against the background of a generally calm geomagnetic situation, the storm is expected to be at G2 level, and the Earth’s magnetosphere will be perturbed on May 7, 8 and May 18, follows from the graph of the Laboratory of X-ray Astronomy of the Sun of the Lebedev Physics Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (FIAN).
The previous magnetic storm occurred on April 20 and became the largest since the beginning of 2018. Prior to this, only one storm at the maximum reached this peak this year, which occurred on the night of March 18 to March 19, Moscow time, but the duration of the maximum phase was then only about 2.5 hours, note astronomers.
The passage of the Earth through the streams of solar wind of this width is not an exceptional event and is often observed near the minimum of solar activity. This is due to the fact that in the solar cycle minimum the magnetic field of the Sun is significantly weakened, and it partially loses its ability to retain the solar plasma near the surface of the star.
As a result, the velocity and density of the streams of matter escaping from the sun increase noticeably, which form the solar wind. Several such long series of geomagnetic disturbances were observed last year at the stage of transition to the solar minimum.
Astronomers note that magnetic storms, classified as a G2 level event on a five-point scale, can lead to weak fluctuations in energy systems, and also have little impact on spacecraft control systems. In this case auroras can be observed at high latitudes from 60 degrees and above.