A Brief Review of Space Weather Disturbances


A branch of physics which becomes increasingly relevant to our societal functions is magnetospheric physics. This rise to fame is due to the incessant growth in the utilization of space technology and assets in our daily lives. Much like adverse atmospheric weather can wreak havoc to our homes and facilities, disturbances in the magnetosphere can render space assets for communication and navigation inoperative as well as pose hazard to astronauts and people on commercial polar flights. Two main space disturbances are magnetic storms and magnetospheric substorms. The former has been studied for more than a century and the latter for four decades. This article provides a brief overview of the main features observed in these space disturbances and some theoretical models for their cause.

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Published by The Chinese Geoscience Union