- Posted January 5, 2013 by
This iReport is part of an assignment:
Solarstorm Watch ~ Next 10 Days!
As with most weather the chance for a perfectly accurate prediction is somewhat slim. Although you can usually see the storm coming you cannot always tell where it's going to hit or how strong it may be. Hopefully for most, just knowing that a storm is knocking on the door is enough to prepare a little bit.
We have just recently went through a fairly rare major drop in solar activity lasting for many weeks and this seems to be the abrupt end to that drought that is upon us. Eventhough most of the activity heading our way doesn't look to be severe at this time, there are on the other hand a large amount of active regions.
This is only a watch , the term "Watch" in this case would expect a chance of increased solar activity, it does not assure that an event or events will occur.
In the case of a severe event the following could be some of the effects in a worst case scenereo:
Power systems could have widespread voltage control problems and protective system problems, some grid systems could experience collapse or blackouts. Transformers could experience damage.
Spacecraft operations could experience surface charging, problems with orientation, uplink/downlink and tracking satellites.
Pipeline currents could reach hundreds of amps, HF (high frequency) radio propagation could be impossible in many areas for one to two days, satellite navigation could be degraded for days, low-frequency radio navigation could be out for hours, and aurora has been seen as low as Florida and southern Texas.
Biological effects could reach unavoidably high radiation hazards to astronauts on EVA and to passengers and crews in high-flying aircraft at high latitudes.
Satellite operations could be rendered useless, memory impacts could cause loss of control and cause serious noise in image data, star-trackers could be unable to locate sources; permanent damage to solar panels possible.
Complete blackout of HF (high frequency) communications possible through the polar regions, and position errors could make navigation operations extremely difficult.
Complete HF (high frequency**) radio blackout on the entire sunlit side of the Earth could be possible lasting for a number of hours.
Low-frequency navigation signals used by maritime and general aviation systems could experience outages on the sunlit side of the Earth for many hours, causing loss in positioning. Increased satellite navigation errors in positioning for several hours on the sunlit side of Earth, which could spread into the night side.
This is not meant to be a prediction but simply a reminder that a little preparation can go a long way. Water, flashlights, canned food, batteries & a emergency radio are not hard to come by before a disaster.
The nature of weather is to change, and the best tip of all is Be Prepared!