Space Weather for Engineers
posted: September 25, 2013

The morning of September 1, 1859, the English astronomer Richard Carrington studies as usual the Sun in his private observatory. While making drawings of sunspots, he notes 2 white light flashes of which the range and intensity suddenly grows and disappears after a few moments. The next day, compasses were not able to point north, the telegraph bursted with anger. The early seeds of something like Space Weather were planted, although it was not yet called like that at those times.

Now, more then 150 years later, Space Weather is an emerging field that impacts a broad spectrum of groups and human activities. There is no international consensus on a definition of Space Weather, but we can state that Space Weather describes the conditions in space that affect Earth and its technological systems.

Since a few decades, space Weather scientists have done a lot of research and want to share their knowledge and understanding. As such, we organize Space Weather for Engineers. This course aimes to make people, and engineers in particular, aware of the solar or spatial origin of the disturbances and disruptions that are witnessed in many ground based and spatial technological systems, and to explain the physical mechanisms behind them, to indicate where to find the relevant predictive data and to train how to interpret them in order to lower the risk of damage to technical equipment and economic losses. As a matter of fact, Space Weather predictions are readily available nowadays and the Space Weather community has been working hard to make them widely accessible.

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