December 25, 2018, 07:45 UTC

The Earth will spend New Year and Christmas holidays in relaxed atmosphere

New Year. Christmas tree decorations. New Year. Christmas tree decorations. Image from the Internet.

The New Year and Christmas holidays in 2019 will be spent in a calm geomagnetic atmosphere. This is evidenced by geomagnetic activity data for a long-term forecasting, obtained from the observations of the Sun and the measurements of the solar wind fluxes.

Russians (as every inhabitant of the Earth, generally) will celebrate the New Year in conditions close to ideal. Fluctuations in the magnetic field from the first weekend, 30 January 2018 to 3 January 2019, will be in Kp index ranging from 0 to 3, which corresponds to a natural level of the Earth’s field. At the same time, New Year's Eve will be one of the calmest nights for the whole year. A slight increase in magnetic oscillations is possible only on January the 4th due to a slight increase in the velocity of a solar wind, however, it will last no more than a few hours. After which the situation will again become comfortable, including at night on the Christmas Eve, from 6 to 7January 2019. The weak growth of the geomagnetic background, according to the forecast, is possible in the second weak, after the end of the holidays on 16 January, but shouldn’t also last for more than 3-6 hours.

Before that, in 2017 and 2018, weak magnetic oscillations were observed on the first day of the year, and on 1 January 2016 a magnetic storm had occurred. Christmas in 2016 and 2017 also went with an increased geomagnetic background, and, in the current year of 2018 on 6 and 7 January, they, on the contrary, became one of the calmest days of the year, without spoiling the holiday.

Speaking of a longer period, in the first half of the coming 2019 we will have to expect the minimum of a solar cycle, and there will be a complete disappearance of the flares on the Sun and of the geomagnetic disturbances on Earth. A slight increase in solar activity can begin in summer-autumn of 2019, and, a noticeable level the solar activity can reach, probably, not earlier than the first half of 2020.

Laboratory of X-ray astronomy of the Sun, Lebedev Institute, Russia