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Don't we need better high geomagnetic parameters?


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It was quite interesting to observe the latest "Mother's Day" storm effects.

As many already know in the forum, I'm a neurosurgeon, very interested in Space Weather (alson on the effects on the brain and neurologic conditions) but far from a space weather specialist. Sorry if this question have been posted before (I did not find out).

It is well known that the storm of 10, 11 and 12 of May arrived for long periods to G4-G5 and Kp index of 9...

We are very aware of the possibility of much stronger storms. The Kyoto index arrived to near -430 GW. The Carrington was estimated to have reached about -800 to -1200 (proxies). Wouldn't it be interesting if we had better high threshold scales in terms of Kp index and Geomagnetic storm scales?

It seems in terms of studies and notification the current scales could be missing the limits between safe and risky zones.

 

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54 minutes ago, Paulo Scaldaferri said:

We are very aware of the possibility of much stronger storms. The Kyoto index arrived to near -430 GW. The Carrington was estimated to have reached about -800 to -1200 (proxies). Wouldn't it be interesting if we had better high threshold scales in terms of Kp index and Geomagnetic storm scales?

It may be similar to tornadoes and hurricanes. For EF5 tornadoes, the destruction is complete. There is no way to determine if a tornado could be EF6 at ground level. The same somewhat goes with hurricanes with its sustained winds.

There may be no use of going above K9/Kp9 or they are so rare that they are unneeded. You even have a range there for the Carrington event. We don't have modern measurements for events like it.

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2 hours ago, Paulo Scaldaferri said:

It was quite interesting to observe the latest "Mother's Day" storm effects.

As many already know in the forum, I'm a neurosurgeon, very interested in Space Weather (alson on the effects on the brain and neurologic conditions) but far from a space weather specialist. Sorry if this question have been posted before (I did not find out).

It is well known that the storm of 10, 11 and 12 of May arrived for long periods to G4-G5 and Kp index of 9...

We are very aware of the possibility of much stronger storms. The Kyoto index arrived to near -430 GW. The Carrington was estimated to have reached about -800 to -1200 (proxies). Wouldn't it be interesting if we had better high threshold scales in terms of Kp index and Geomagnetic storm scales?

It seems in terms of studies and notification the current scales could be missing the limits between safe and risky zones.

 

Good question ☝️ I read what @Jesterface23 replied and I go with this, he has much more experience and it sounds logical for me.

Anyway, a friend sent me a graph with the short Kp index values. If I remember right it was not 3h time span it was 30 minutes or so. And there was a bar with 11.3 when I remember right. Maybe this is what you thought about? 

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24 minutes ago, Ingolf said:

Good question ☝️ I read what @Jesterface23 replied and I go with this, he has much more experience and it sounds logical for me.

Anyway, a friend sent me a graph with the short Kp index values. If I remember right it was not 3h time span it was 30 minutes or so. And there was a bar with 11.3 when I remember right. Maybe this is what you thought about? 

Just wanted to add that it was probably the GFZ Potsdam you were thinking about? 
Here's a link if that's the case: https://kp.gfz-potsdam.de/en/hp30-hp60

Edited by arjemma
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3 hours ago, Paulo Scaldaferri said:

We are very aware of the possibility of much stronger storms. The Kyoto index arrived to near -430 GW. The Carrington was estimated to have reached about -800 to -1200 (proxies). Wouldn't it be interesting if we had better high threshold scales in terms of Kp index and Geomagnetic storm scales?

Just to be clear (not sure if it's just a typo or a misunderstanding), the Kyoto Dst-index is measured in nT, not GW, and is a measure of geomagnetic disturbance, like the a- and K-indices are. It already serves as quite a good high-threshold scale in that sense. But I assume you mean why we don't have any explicit category in the Kp-index for levels of activity that are beyond extreme, so as to e.g. differentiate between something like this recent storm and the even stronger 1989 one; the answer is probably that it's already so rare that it's not really necessary, since we have other measurements that can distinguish between them in those very rare cases.

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3 hours ago, Paulo Scaldaferri said:

It is well known that the storm of 10, 11 and 12 of May arrived for long periods to G4-G5 and Kp index of 9...

We are very aware of the possibility of much stronger storms. The Kyoto index arrived to near -430 GW. The Carrington was estimated to have reached about -800 to -1200 (proxies). Wouldn't it be interesting if we had better high threshold scales in terms of Kp index and Geomagnetic storm scales?

It seems in terms of studies and notification the current scales could be missing the limits between safe and risky zones.

 

G scale and Kp index are the most straight forward warning system for the average person. Im sure Jesterface did the best explaining why it's capped by comparing it to EF scale for tornados.

The AE index and DST are a little more complicated but produce more detailed information during geomagnetic storming. AE index measures the Auroral Electrojet and how far and how frequent it reaches towards the equator. DST measures the equatorial ring current and shows the averages for longitude. 

There are several more indexes and indices but these are the most commonly used. 

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