This audio recording of Earth’s magnetic field is the “stuff of nightmares”

You can see Earth’s magnetic field interacting with cosmic radiation in the form of the aurora borealis. And now, thanks to a project at the Technical University of Denmark, you can hear the magnetic field, but it lacks the ethereal beauty of the aurora borealis. In fact, it’s downright spooky. The researchers used magnetic fields collected by European Space Agency’s (ESA) swarm satellite system, and adjusted the frequency to make it audible to the human ear.

From the European Space Agency website:

Launched in 2013, ESA’s trio of Swarm satellites are being used to understand exactly how our magnetic field is generated by measuring precisely the magnetic signals that stem not only from Earth’s core, but also from the mantle, crust and oceans, as well as from the ionosphere and magnetosphere. Swarm is also leading to new insights into weather in space.

Musician and project supporter Klaus Nielsen, from the Technical University of Denmark, explains, “The team used data from ESA’s Swarm satellites, as well as other sources, and used these magnetic signals to manipulate and control a sonic representation of the core field. project has certainly been a rewarding exercise in bringing art and science together.”

It might sound like the stuff of nightmares, but, remarkably, this audio clip represents the magnetic field generated by Earth’s core and a solar storm.

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