Wednesday, May 17, 2017

Everyone Can and Does Pollute Earth but Only Experts Do it to Space - Science

Human activities have been changing near-Earth space and weather

Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/Genna Duberstein

Our Cold War history is now offering scientists a chance to better understand the complex space system that surrounds us. Space weather -- which can include changes in Earth's magnetic environment -- is usually triggered by the sun's activity, but recently declassified data on high-altitude nuclear explosion tests have provided a new look at the mechansisms that set off perturbations in that magnetic system. Such information can help support NASA's efforts to protect satellites and astronauts from the natural radiation inherent in space.

From 1958 to 1962, the U.S. and U.S.S.R. ran high-altitude tests with exotic code names like Starfish, Argus and Teak. The tests have long since ended, and the goals at the time were military. Today, however, they can provide crucial information on how humans can affect space. The tests, and other human-induced space weather, are the focus of a comprehensive new study published in Space Science Reviews.

Science Daily: Space weather events linked to human activity

Well, that was clever, wasn't it.

The interested student is invited to pursue the detail of the article but the conclusion will suffice here.

Atmospheric nuclear testing has long since stopped, and the present space environment remains dominated by natural phenomena. However, considering such historical events allows scientists and engineers to understand the effects of space weather on our infrastructure and technical systems.

- SD

The Rockhouse takes from that no intention to herald a disaster but rather they consider the perils of children playing with toys they don't really understand.

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