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Tags Current Affairs

Space hurricane

Date: 06 March 2021 Tags: Space

Issue

Astronomers have detected a “hurricane” of plasma in upper atmosphere of the Earth. They have termed this phenomenon as “space hurricane”.

 

Background

The space hurricane was discovered above the Earth’s magnetic north pole. It existed for about 8-10 hours.

 

Details

  • The hurricane was formed due to combination of magnetic field lines and fast-flying solar winds. It was not visible to naked eye but was caught on satellites.

  • The space hurricane was in form of a funnel with an eye at the centre. It was surrounded by spinning plasma, moving in a counter-clockwise direction.

  • The space hurricane rained electrons into the upper atmosphere instead of water that a typical hurricane would rain.

  • Scientists assume that these space hurricanes may have been formed due to rapid transfer of solar wind energy and charged particles into the Earth’s upper atmosphere.

  • The researchers have used hypothesis to assume that the formation resulted from a complex interaction between incoming solar wind and the magnetic field over the North Pole.

  • The phenomenon may not be restricted to only earth but may also occur on any planet with a magnetic shield and plasma in its atmosphere. This is because plasma and magnetic fields are found all over the universe.

 

Plasma

Plasma is a state of matter that is similar to gas, but the atomic particles are charged rather than neutral. Plasma is often called a fourth state of matter after solid, liquid and gas.

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