In the same way that before embarking on a voyage, it is a good idea to take a look at the weather forecast, NASA scientists devote many efforts to forecast if the space conditions are right for a great trip. The latest data confirm that the next decade will be ideal.
The new research conducted by Irina Kitiashvili, a researcher at NASA’s Environmental Research Institute, has combined reports from several space missions, observatories around the world and a huge amount of data collected since 1976 to reach the conclusion that the next cycle Solar will be the weakest in 200 years, starting in 2020 and 2025 being the optimal year to undertake an adventure.
The method designed by the Kitiashvili team differs from the systems that had been used so far, which used the number of sunspots to determine the activity of their magnetic field. The new approach incorporates direct observations on the magnetic fields that emerge from the surface of the Sun with data that has been collected during the last four solar cycles.
In an interesting article published in the official blog of the space agency, it explains how solar cycles last about 11 years and are predictable, thanks to the observation of sunspots and mass ejections produced by our Sun.
Undertaking a space mission in a turbulent period would force astronauts to face scenarios of solar storms and undergo high doses of radiation, endangering both the mission and their lives. Among others, NASA is immersed in the Artemis project, with which they intend to take the first woman and another man to the Moon before 2024.