Thursday, March 08, 2012

Solar storm hits Earth - fears of disruption as particles blaze in at 4 million mph

Keep your head down – a massive solar storm that could disrupt everything from GPS satellite navigation to power grids and even airplane routes is imminent.

A wave of charged particles travelling at about 4million miles per hour is about to hit the Earth, triggered by two huge solar flares earlier this week.

Effects of the storm will be more intense in polar regions and aircraft have been advised to change their routes.

"It's hitting us right in the nose," said Joseph Kunches, an expert at the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (Noaa).

On a positive note, the Northern Lights might be seen at lower latitudes, possibly tonight in the UK.

It all sounds like a disaster movie in the sky near you, starring of course Nicolas Cage. Remember ‘Knowing’, the American/British sci-fi film made in 2009?

To be fair, a huge solar flare did cut long-distance telephones in Illinois in 1972.



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