Wait, what? In what sounds like something from a sci-fi movie, residents of earth will experience a phenomenon where the Sun is set to “flip upside down” within the next couple of weeks. NASA scientists have said that the Sun will have it’s magnetic field’s polarity reversed in an event that will have far reaching effects throughout the universe.
Time to tell your bosses to go screw themselves?
– Well no. Even though it sounds like it’s the worst thing to happen since Robert McBride was suggested as the next head of the South African Police Investigative Directorate it isn’t going to cause catastrophic damage. The sun switches its polarity, flipping its magnetic north and south, once every 11 years, causing intergalactic weather fronts such as geomagnetic storms, which interfere with satellites and cause radio blackouts.
The event will be watched closely by researchers at Stanford University’s Wilcox Solar Observatory, which monitors the sun’s magnetic field on a daily basis.Todd Hoeksema, director of the Wilcox Solar Observatory, said the polarity change is built up throughout the eleven year cycle through areas of intense magnetic activity known as sunspots which gradually move towards the poles, eroding the existing opposite polarity.
Eventually, the magnetic field reduces to zero, before rebounding with the opposite polarity.
“It’s kind of like a tide coming in or going out,” Hoeksema said. “Each little wave brings a little more water in, and eventually you get to the full reversal.”