Second Solar Storm Headed for Earth

Friday, August 23, 2013

This closeup still of the January 22, 2012, M8.7 class solar flare was taken by the Solar Dynamics Observatory. (NASA/Wikimedia Commons)

Something new may be further complicating domestic surveillance missions over at the high-tech NSA: Powerful solar storms.

On Tuesday, the Sun released superheated particles that were headed toward Earth and reports came down on Friday that the Sun fired a second massive solar storm. The storms produce what astronomers call a coronal mass ejection where millions of tons of charged particles come hurtling towards Earth. They could be responsible for interference or even complete shut downs of some space based communications.

Professor Richard Harrison, has been tracking the solar storm. He's chief scientist at the Space Science department of the Rutherford Appleton Laboratory in Oxfordshire, England, and he says Earth is about to be hosed down by a magnet.

 

Guests:

Richard Harrison

Editors:

T.J. Raphael

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