Solar astronomy is a fascinating science. When it comes to mega eruptions from solar spots, you can usually see these in the form of solar prominences. There are also solar flares that might have much more energy than prominences, which usually look like they are arcs bent and flowing its plasma back to the solar surface. All of these bursts, both bent and unbent solar phenomena, seem rather exciting to see when watching a good SciFi film.
When it comes to reality though? This is a completely different story, and an occurrence that we may be facing right now. According to the Daily Mail of UK, just last week the sun shot out a Coronal Mass Ejection that barely grazed our planet and yet it managed to cause some disruption with airline communications. Now it seems that another similar CME is heading our way for a more direct hit, and its the largest observed in the last 30 years.
The solar flare was classified as an X18-category explosion, meaning it can trigger planet-wide radio blackouts and long-lasting radiation storms.
This Coronal Mass Ejection may bring some electromagnetic impulses capable of interrupting radio communications here on Earth and may even fry a few satellites right in their orbits.The biggest noticeable impact of the hit should be displayed in the northern auroral lights. These lights will become spectacular, colorful, and especially visible down to the south (or north, if you’re watching them from New Zealand).
Such an electromagnetic pulse generally “weighs” next to nothing and could disrupts some delicate microelectronics devices such as cell phones, communication satellites, and all such exposed and vulnerable devices. Allegedly, this CME has a tremendous mass of plasma flying in the general our direction, and even a small portion of it not declined by our Earth’s feeble magnetic field can hit the power grids and all the utilities controls very hard. With x18 category explosion we should be ok, those reaching x30 would be severely devastating.
At least according to Daily Mail UK, scientists believe that the flare of energy will hit sometime tonight with multiple shots continuing up to 24 hours or more from different directions across the globe.
You have to wonder though, if such massive activity is really heading our way why aren’t there other major news articles buzzing about this major disaster in the making? This means you should likely take the claim with a grain of salt, but for those of us that really love our cellphones we might want to at least consider the possibility of wrapping our phones in tinfoil to keep them protected.
As for me though, I’m not planning to hide and shield my “dumb” phone with tinfoil though: let it fry. This will give me a convenient excuse to get a good one during the upcoming Holiday sales, right?