Solar Cycle 25 predictions announced
Part of: GS Prelims and GS-III – Space
- Scientists from NASA and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) announced their predictions about the new solar cycle, called Solar Cycle 25.
- The Scientists believe that the cycle has begun.
Important value additions
- Sun’s surface is a very active space.
- Electrically charged gases on its surface generate areas of powerful magnetic forces, which are called magnetic fields.
- These gases are constantly moving.
- Thus, these magnetic fields can get stretched, twisted and tangled creating motion on the surface known as solar activity.
- Solar activity varied with the stages of the solar cycle, which lasts on average for a period of 11 years.
- Solar cycles have implications for life and technology on Earth as well as astronauts in space.
- Scientists track a solar cycle by using sunspots.
- These are the dark blotches on the Sun that are associated with solar activity.
- Sunspots are associated with the origins for giant explosions such as solar flares that can spew light, energy and solar material into space.
- A Sunspot is an area on the Sun that appears dark on the surface and is relatively cooler than the surrounding parts.
- These spots are the visible markers of the Sun’s magnetic field.
- Some spots are as large as 50,000 km in diameter.
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