Solar Cycle 24: Things you Need to Know!
So what does this have to do with us here on Earth? Well its quite interesting, solar activity sends out the auroras or solar flares down to earth, also known as the northern lights its quite a beautiful sight. But there can be downsides as Solar Cycle 24 peaks in late 2011 to mid 2012.
Solar flares have been known to be damaging, in the 1800s magnetic blasts from intense solar activity induced currents in telegraph lines in America and Italy, starting fires and damaging equipment. When you consider these Solar storms can carry tremendous power and travel at speeds up to 5 million miles per hour the damage they can do is significant.It also came to notice that Solar activity affected radio transmission and electrical-power grids. The 1989 blackout in Canada was cause by solar flares that blew up transformers.
Once a solar cycle reaches it’s maximum level it brings a greater risk of knocking down GPS signals, cell phones, civilian and airline communications, military communications. Satellites that orbit earth are hit the hardest with solar flares.
Steve Hill, Space Weather Prediction Center, said, “Solar storms have a big effect on polar regions of our planet. When airplanes fly over the poles during solar storms, they can experience radio blackouts, navigation errors and computer reboots all caused by space radiation. Avoiding the poles during solar storms solves the problem, but it costs extra time, money and fuel to take the long way around.”
Some scientists claim Solar Activity is responsible for the climate change on earth as well while some go further to state that Global warming could be the effect of hyper solar activity. Although the next Solar Cycle 25 is suppose to have the least intensity and could create a little ice age on earth again.
But what can be expected from Solar Cycle 24 one cannot say, as its not progressing as it should have according to historical statistics, so the only option is to wait and watch. But governments and corporations from around the world are bracing themselves for the worst, we shall watch the Northern Lights shine bright. You may want to check the 2008 Aurora Photo Gallery.
Here’s a Time Lapse Solar Flare Video: