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Sun's magnetic field has flipped upside-down

Posted on Tuesday, 31 December, 2013 | Comment icon 14 comments

The magnetic reversal is a regular occurrence. Image Credit: NASA/SDO
NASA has announced that the long-awaited reversal of the sun's magnetic poles has finally taken place.
The reversal, which takes place every 11 years, is part of the sun's natural cycle and is not believed to pose any risk to the Earth. The magnetic fields will now begin their next cycle which will culminate in another reversal at the end of the 22 year long process.

"A reversal of the sun's magnetic field is, literally, a big event," said Dr. Tony Phillips. "The domain of the sun's magnetic influence (also known as the 'heliosphere') extends billions of kilometers beyond Pluto. Changes to the field's polarity ripple all the way out to the Voyager probes, on the doorstep of interstellar space."

Source: Independent | Comments (14)

Tags: Sun, Magnetic Poles

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #5 Posted by skookum on 31 December, 2013, 16:05
Could this effect the weather? Maybe the reason why we have had storm after storm in the UK over a week or more.
Comment icon #6 Posted by Space_Jockey on 31 December, 2013, 16:38
If only I could be so grossly incandescent. Praise the sun.
Comment icon #7 Posted by ninjadude on 31 December, 2013, 19:55
Is there an English word for, "once every eleven years," like maybe "eleventyannual?" Undecennial
Comment icon #8 Posted by pallidin on 31 December, 2013, 20:05
Well, this explains why I flipped on my wife. At least now I have an "excuse"
Comment icon #9 Posted by DieChecker on 31 December, 2013, 20:56
I saw people talking about this and claiming it was a very epic event, but they failed to mention the every 11 years part. This has happened 4 times since I was born. Hoo hum..... Interesting, but understood.
Comment icon #10 Posted by ancient astronaut on 1 January, 2014, 2:56
I flipped upside down once. It hurt like the ****.
Comment icon #11 Posted by Frank Merton on 1 January, 2014, 3:05
When I was young I could walk on my hands and flip or do cartwheels down the street. Everyone should be young.
Comment icon #12 Posted by Waspie_Dwarf on 7 January, 2014, 12:42
Interesting, but understood. "Understood" is overstating it a bit. We know that it does it. We know how frequently it does it. We don't really know why it does it.
Comment icon #13 Posted by Sundew on 12 January, 2014, 19:23
"Understood" is overstating it a bit. We know that it does it. We know how frequently it does it. We don't really know why it does it. Does it actually have any effect upon the Earth (such as our communications or our satellites) or is it just a scientific curiosity?
Comment icon #14 Posted by lightly on 12 January, 2014, 23:01
Could this effect the weather? Maybe the reason why we have had storm after storm in the UK over a week or more. dunno... but i noticed a big change in the weather around then too. I was sort of thinking the solstice might have had something to do with it in some UNunderstood way ??? but i wonder if you might be right about it possibly affecting weather. ...There have been some major solar flares lately too ... ??

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