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Norway Experiences Unexpected Ground Current “Shockwave”

01/08/2020

Spaceweather.com reports that on January 6, unexpected electrical currents were detected in the soil of northern Norway starting at around 1930 UTC.

“It seemed to be some kind of shockwave,” said Rob Stammes, who monitors ground currents at the Polarlightcenter geophysical observatory in Lofoten. “My instruments detected a sudden, strong variation in both ground currents and our local magnetic field. It really was a surprise.”

NASA’s ACE spacecraft detected something as well. About 15 minutes before the disturbance in Norway, the near-Earth interplanetary magnetic field abruptly swung around 180 degrees, and the solar wind density jumped more than five-fold. According to Spaceweather.com, Earth may have crossed through a fold in the heliospheric current sheet, described as “a giant, wavy membrane of electrical current rippling through the solar system.” Such crossings can cause these kind of effects, the Spaceweather.com report said.

The ground currents were accompanied by spectacular displays of aurora borealis visible in Finland. — Thanks to Spaceweather.com



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