Ridley Park's Online Digital Community
Good evening all,
There is a rare event happening right now as we speak. There is a solar storm impacting the Earth right now. It is a fairly strong storm and is rated an X (Strong) on a scale from B C M and X. The scale increases by tenfold with each letter, with the ranges of the B, C, and M going from 1 to 9. X flares can be much stronger than 9, and the strongest one has been estimated to be a X45.
What are solar waves?
Solar waves occur when there is a big explosion on the surface of the sun, primarily associated with sun spots. We see that as a sudden brightening from the sun where the explosion occurred. The explosion then shoots millions of electrons, atoms, and ions into space. The particles move at nearly the speed of light (186,000 miles/second or 300,000,000 meters a second)! The energy released by a solar flare could power the United States for more than 1,000,000 years! Because of the nature of the charged particles and the amount of them, they may interfere with satellite transmissions, radio waves, or even require airplanes to be rerouted because the radiation sneaks through the Earth's ionosphere and through the ozone and can give passengers small radiation doses!
Should we be worried as humans?
No, not at all. In fact, a large majority of the harmful particles are deflected by the Earth's magnetic field, and shoot off into space. These storms happen all the time, and the majority of the storms that the earth receives are B,C and M storms. Although, you may notice some static while talking to to your friend on a cell phone, and you may see some pretty neat Aurora Borealis patterns in the arctic!
A great video: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:X-class_flares.ogv
@Steve. Will we be seeing any effects here in RP, like several interrupted radio signals, freaky garage door openings, or power grid disruptions? AND, if the weather was clear last night could we have seen the Aurora Borealis in RP?