From Monday the northern lights could also be seen over Germany again. After stronger solar flares, there was a stream of particles directed towards Earth, said the private space weather service In the event of a direct hit, northern lights are possible in the middle latitudes of the USA and Europe from early Monday morning, including over Germany.

At high latitudes, the high-energy particles thrown towards Earth can also have effects such as interference with shortwave radio and slightly increased radiation levels for aircraft flying over the poles.

Solar storms are triggered by sudden changes in the star’s magnetic field. They are based on a type of magnetic tubes that can break through to the surface and create cool zones there – the dark sunspots: If such magnetic field tubes meet outside the sun, a kind of short circuit can occur, releasing large amounts of energy become. The result is a so-called coronal mass ejection. Electrically charged matter from the hot solar atmosphere – the corona – is thrown out into space at high speed.

If such a mass ejection hits the Earth’s magnetic field, it leads to beautiful northern lights. However, a strong current can also disrupt or damage the sensitive electronics of satellites. Strongly fluctuating magnetic fields also influence electrical cable networks, can lead to overloading of transformers and trigger large-scale power outages.

The sun goes through a so-called sunspot cycle that lasts about eleven years, with phases of weak and strong activity. At a minimum, no spots can be seen for months, at a maximum, hundreds. The sun’s activity has been increasing steadily since December 2019 and is currently near a maximum. In recent months, northern lights have been seen over Germany again and again, and sometimes even down to the Mediterranean.