How An Aurora May Have Led To The Sinking Of Titanic

KEY POINTS

  • A study explored the possibility that space weather contributed to Titanic disaster
  • Witnesses report of a prominent aurora borealis on the night that the Titanic sank
  • During the event, Titanic and nearby vessels experienced communication disruptions
  • It's possible that the aurora also led to the rescue of many passengers

Could a geomagnetic storm have contributed to the unfortunate fate of the "unsinkable" Titanic? A new study delves into space weather's possible contribution to the event.

Many people are already aware of the fate that befell the Titanic. Named Royal Mail Ship (RMS) Titanic in full and nicknamed the "Millionaires Special" by some according to Britannica, the massive passenger liner left Southampton, England on its maiden voyage en route to New York City on April 10, 1912. Days later, on the evening of April 14, the Titanic collided with an iceberg, eventually leading to its demise.

In a recently published study in the journal Weather, researcher Mila Zinkova considers the possibility that an aurora borealis may have contributed to the events that led to the Titanic to sink, noting several witness accounts saying that the northern lights were quite prominent on the night of the event.

As NASA explains, an aurora occurs when the electrified gas that the sun emits during a coronal mass ejection interacts with the Earth's magnetic field, creating the signature ribbons of light. A strong enough event can lead to disruptions in the magnetic field, affecting in....

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