20/5/2022 – Speaker Samuel Walton on “The Van Allen Radiation Belts”, one of the first major discoveries of the space age, by Prof. James Van Allen in 1958. Despite over 60 years of research, understanding the complex and dynamic nature of Earth’s radiation belts is still one of the biggest and most important challenges in Space Physics. The Van Allen belts are packed with highly energetic charged particles (plasma), which could cause fatal damage to the thousands of satellites in medium-high Earth orbit today. During this talk Samuel Walton will introduce the concept of space radiation and space weather and how these relate to the Van Allen belts. He will also discuss how and why it is important to protect current and future technology from their damaging effects. Finally, what research is currently being done in aid of this?