The Response of Interplanetary Medium to the Geomagnetic Storm of April 2010

R.O Salami, A.B Rabiu, E.O Falayi, F.O Oluyemi


Knowledge of the activities within our own solar system is of fundamental importance in our attempts to understand the processes that occur in the upper reaches of our atmosphere; because, space weather is greatly influenced by the speed and density of solar wind and Interplanetary Magnetic Field (IMF) carried by solar wind plasma. For this reason, behaviours of the interplanetary medium during the storm of 5-7 April 2010 were examined using the routinely observed values of southward component of the Interplanetary Magnetic Field, , Disturbance storm time Index, , Solar Wind Speed. Data of H and Z components of the Earth’s magnetic field recorded at some equatorial and polar stations were also considered to investigate ionospheric responses to the storm. Strong solar wind hit the Earth’s magnetosphere about 0800UT on 5 April 2010 and sparked first geomagnetic storm of the new solar cycle. The storm was the largest geomagnetic storm of the Sun caused in the past three years. The commencement, main phase, and recovery phase of the storm were discussed vis-à-vis response of the interplanetary medium. Probable magnetic processes responsible for the storm as well as the ionospheric implications were also highlighted.

Keywords: Geomagnetic storm, interplanetary magnetic field, solar speed and disturbance storm time index

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