Tags: solar storm | power grids | satellites

Solar Storm Approaching Earth Could Impact Power Grids, Satellites

Image: Solar Storm Approaching Earth Could Impact Power Grids, Satellites
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By    |   Thursday, 15 February 2018 08:10 AM

A solar storm is approaching Earth and could impact power grids and satellites around the planet as early as Thursday, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.

There is a high probability of a G-1 or "minor" storm, which could strengthen to a G-2 or "moderate" storm depending on how the stream of particles hit Earth, NOAA said per the website Seeker.

There also is a small chance that the storm will disrupt satellites or power grids, with NOAA warning the sun particles could create "weak power grid fluctuations" along with "minor impact on satellite operations," Seeker noted.

The Weather Network reported the solar storm is the product of a small solar flare that the sun dispensed on Monday, and it will produce auroras, known as Northern Lights, across Canada.

"Space weather forecasters watch for geomagnetic storms because they can cause problems with GPS signals, radio communications, and even our power grids, depending on the strength of the storm," Weather Network noted.

"A G-1 storm, the weakest category, only rarely causes any problems with our technologies, and they present little to no health risk to us on the surface (those flying on high-latitude, trans-continental flights, at the time, could be exposed to the radiation equivalent of a chest x-ray, though)."

NOAA said the aurora may be visible at high latitudes, meaning that they could possibly be seen in the "northern tier" of the United States as well, like northern Michigan and Maine.

Seeker reported that NOAA and NASA monitor the sun with numerous telescopes, like the space-bound Solar Dynamics Observatory and the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, which help generate weather forecasts by detecting when solar activity occurs.

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A solar storm is approaching Earth and could impact power grids and satellites around the planet as early as Thursday, according to the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration.
solar storm, power grids, satellites
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2018-10-15
Thursday, 15 February 2018 08:10 AM
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