Solar Storm this Weekend, Charged Particles to Hit Earth
A massive solar eruption, X class solar flare that is considered as one of the intense types is due to hit the earth Saturday. The solar storm began Thursday emitted a huge flare of charged particles towards the earth at almost 5 million kilometre an hour.
Scientists said it will be a minor event and they have notified power grid operators, airlines and other potentially affected parties.
"This isn't the mother of all anything," said forecaster Joe Kunches at the government's Space Weather Prediction Center in Boulder, Colo. "We don't see any ill effects to any systems."
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This is the sixth time this year that we've had such powerful solar outburst, but we have never received any major destruction. In worst cases, the solar storms can cause power blackouts damage satellites and disrupt GPS signals and high frequency radio communication. One such incident had occurred in the year 1989 when a strong solar sorm knocked out the power grid in Quebec causing 6 million people to lose electricity,
The reports from NASA claim that "According to a forecast track prepared by analysts at the [NASA] Goddard Space Weather Lab, the CME will hit Earth on July 14th around 10:20 UT (+/- 7 hours) and could spark strong geomagnetic storms." But the reports from NOAA's contradict this with NOAA's statement saying, "only minor geomagnetic storming here when the blast arrives likely Saturday, with few impacts noticeable to most people." The difference in the predictions keeps layman at a fix as to what will be the affect of the solar eruptions.
"If you're in a plane flying over the poles, there is an increased radiation exposure comparable to having an extra chest X-ray you weren't planning on," study co-author John Bieber, of the University of Delaware's Bartol Research Institute, said in a statement. "However, if you're an astronaut on the way to the moon or Mars, it's a big problem. It could kill you."