The Bridge V Learning 2(clone) - Page 50

Background Information

Scientists measure solar storms using a variety of tools. One of the measurements they use to determine the intensity of solar storms is changes in magnetic fields. Scientists use magnetometers to monitor the Earth's environment in space for signs of bad space weather caused by solar activity. Solar storms can affect the Earth's magnetic field causing small changes in its direction at the surface, which are called magnetic storms. A magnetometer operates like a sensitive compass and reads the slight changes.

Vocabulary

magnetic field

Noun

area around and affected by a magnet or charged particle.

magnetic storm

Noun

interaction between the Earth's atmosphere and charged particles from solar wind.

magnetometer

Noun

scientific instrument used to measure the presence, strength, and direction of Earth's magnetic field.

magnetosphere

Noun

teardrop-shaped area, with the flat area facing the sun, around the Earth controlled by the Earth's magnetic field.

nanotesla

Noun

(nT) unit of measurement for magnetic flux density (magnetic field B), which is magnetic force on a moving charge.

solar flare

Noun

explosion in the sun's atmosphere, which releases a burst of energy and charged particles into the solar system.

solar wind

Noun

flow of charged particles, mainly protons and electrons, from the sun to the edge of the solar system.

space weather

Noun

changes in the environment outside the Earth's atmosphere, usually influenced by the sun.