March 11, 2016

Arctic Satellite dishes for solar storms: Svalbard, Norway


It is late afternoon - kind of a blue hour - when we pass those huge satellite dishes up in a mountainside someplace outside of Longyearbyen at Svalbard in the Arctic Norway.

BBC have some additional info at the net:
Scientists in the Arctic have launched an urgent investigation into how solar storms can disrupt sat-nav.

Studies have revealed how space weather can cut the accuracy of GPS by tens of metres.
Flares from the Sun interact with the upper atmosphere and can distort the signals from global positioning satellites.

The research is pressing because rapid warming is attracting more vessels, tourists and mining operators.

The project is under way at a remote observatory on a windswept mountainside in the Norwegian archipelago of Svalbard in the High Arctic.

The northern lights are one familiar effect of solar storms
The most familiar effect of solar storms is the creation - when the Sun's particles strike the Earth's magnetic field - of the beautiful Northern Lights.

But the scientists are hoping to understand the impact on satellite signals and then to try to develop a system for forecasting the most damaging effects of space weather.
The site was chosen for its isolation from electronic pollution and for its position in relation to the Earth's magnetic field which flows from space down towards the far North.

Violent solar activity has long been known to pose risks to satellites in orbit and to electricity networks. Aircraft flight-paths are usually altered to avoid the most northerly areas.

For more details go to the interesting WEB page:


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