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Thread: The Sun's Wrath

  1. #1
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    The Sun's Wrath


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    Solar cycles, solar storms, humans watching flares of doom!

    From Space.com:

    The sun brings light and warmth to all life on Earth, but it has a temper too. Solar flares, eruptions and other sun storms can have serious effects to satellites and other systems around or on Earth.

    Take a look at some of the worst solar storms known to humanity.

    * ****** **** ****** *

    From Vimeo: AMASIA Origins

    A solar flare sparks major climatic changes on Earth. These changes are not going to be without 
consequences for humanity.

    * ****** **** ****** *

    Pleasant dreams ...



  2. #2
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    How much we have already learned, yet the vast unknowns we still no nothing about that will one day surprise us with little notice.

  3. #3
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    Solar astronomy is an interesting field. It's the one type of astronomy that has a real impact on the average human being. During the 80's I was a US Air Force engineer attached to Sacramento Peak National Solar Observatory in southern New Mexico. http://nsosp.nso.edu/

    I helped develop the USAF's global network of then current generation solar observatories. Most people don't know it, but the Air Force has been working on solar weather forecasting since the early 70's. There is a network of observatories that basically ring the planet, so that (weather permitting) at least one observatory is looking at the sun at all times, with sites in New Mexico, Hawaii, Western Australia, Italy, Puerto Rico and Massachusetts. They actually draw the forecasting staff from Air Force meteorologists.

    There are a LOT of ways that solar weather effects our little chunk of space. For example, the Solar Max of 1979 (the sun has an 11 year prime cycle) is what caused the space station Skylab to fall out of orbit. Beta storms and coronal mass ejections also cause a phenomenon called 'Space Charging' where sections of a space craft or satellite that are in direct sunlight can build up an electrical potential of hundreds of thousands of volts compared to the areas in shade. If this discharges through the electronics, it can be disastrous. There have been several commercial and at least one military satellite that was killed this way. There are also the biological dangers from bursts of Gama radiation during a solar flare that astronauts have to worry about. When I was working in the field, the International Space Station wasn't built yet, but there were a LOT of shuttle missions going on. Solar forecasters had ONE MINUTE to alert NASA if there was a solar event detected that was headed this way. The protocol was to stop any EVA and turn the heat shield of the shuttle toward the sun until the danger was past.

    That's not even considering all the effects that solar weather has here on the planet. Geomagnetic storms can cause power grid failure, radio, radar and satellite communication disruption, and aircraft navigation errors. They play holy he11 with VLF radio transmissions that submarines use, and was the cause of at least one nuclear armed submarine incident during the cold war that had the potential of kicking off a HOT war.

    All in all it's a fascinating subject, and sobering example of how little we are in the grand scheme of things.

  4. #4
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    I like that. I was Air Force some years before you and was slated for Weather. Something else came up so I volunteered for the language program instead. We did surveillance on a lot of weather reports ourselves.

    The more time we spend off-planet, the more we realize how "hot" it can get out there! Interrupted communications on Earth are nothing compared to fried astronauts in orbit.

  5. #5
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    Ed, you know what Jack Burton says at the height of a solar storm like this:

    I dare a solar flare
    To strike while I'm sitting in my Kenworth chair
    Staring off in the distance sky
    I'll throw a Carrington Event party before I die
    Here on Interstate 99
    Partying like it's 1859


    -555
    Allen Saunders: Life is what happens to us while we are making other plans.

  6. #6
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    2013-10-31 04:26 Awaiting the CME

    Indicators still suggest the pending passage of a CME. Forecasters anticipate G1 (Minor) Geomagnetic Storm conditions for October 31. Watch for the shock here.



    2013-10-30 13:58 Geomagnetic Storm Coming

    The forerunner protons seen in the solar wind data indicate a shock coming from the sun. The shock, out in front of a CME, is expected October 31. G1 (Minor) Geomagnetic Storm conditions should prevail then. Back at the sun, relative calm since the R3 (Strong) Radio Blackout yesterday.


    2013-10-30 13:57 Geomagnetic Storm Coming

    2013-10-30 13:53 UTC Geomagnetic Storm Coming
    Whine: My arms are getting tired.
    Here I am with a new bag of Marshmallows, holding a stick in each hang with three marshmallows each, waiting the first blast.
    Allen Saunders: Life is what happens to us while we are making other plans.

  7. #7
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    Interesting thread!

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