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Apocalyptic solar flare narrowly avoided two years ago

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#1
cocky4ever

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http://m.washingtonp...-two-years-ago/



On July 23, 2012, the sun unleashed two massive clouds of plasma that barely missed a catastrophic encounter with the Earth’s atmosphere.  These plasma clouds, known as coronal mass ejections (CMEs), comprised a solar storm thought to be the most powerful in at least 150 years.

“If it had hit, we would still be picking up the pieces,” physicist Daniel Baker of the University of Colorado tells NASA.


Fortunately, the blast site of the CMEs was not directed at Earth.  Had this event occurred a week earlier when the point of eruption was Earth-facing, a potentially disastrous outcome would have unfolded.

“I have come away from our recent studies more convinced than ever that Earth and its inhabitants were incredibly fortunate that the 2012 eruption happened when it did,” Baker tells NASA.  “If the eruption had occurred only one week earlier, Earth would have been in the line of fire.”



A CME double whammy of this potency striking Earth would likely cripple satellite communications and could severely damage the power grid.  NASA offers this sobering assessment:

Analysts believe that a direct hit … could cause widespread power blackouts, disabling everything that plugs into a wall socket.  Most people wouldn’t even be able to flush their toilet because urban water supplies largely rely on electric pumps.

. . .

According to a study by the National Academy of Sciences, the total economic impact could exceed $2 trillion or 20 times greater than the costs of a Hurricane Katrina. Multi-ton transformers damaged by such a storm might take years to repair.



More at link


#2
Based Potato

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#3
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#4
bbqit

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If I remember right analog would still work but digital would be fried.
Du-te la dracu 'LSU

#5
CrimsoNation713

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View Postbbqit, on 25 July 2014 - 11:03 AM, said:

If I remember right analog would still work but digital would be fried.
Bush's fault :trollface:
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-- Derrick Thomas

#6
nova

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View Postbbqit, on 25 July 2014 - 11:03 AM, said:

If I remember right analog would still work but digital would be fried.

It depends.  A CME interacting with the earths magnetic field and atmosphere can have effects similar to an EMP.  Basically it induces high currents in wires (including micro-circuitry) that can't handle them burning them out.

Analog systems like vaccum tubes are more resiliant due to heavier wiring but they're not completly immune...

#7
JoeGator

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At least we could have avoided 4-8.

#8
bbqit

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View PostJoeGator, on 25 July 2014 - 11:15 AM, said:

At least we could have avoided 4-8.

No, you just wouldn't have to watch it on tv
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#9
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I didn't read the article.
We wouldn't all be dead?

#10
bbqit

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View PostJoeGator, on 25 July 2014 - 11:18 AM, said:

I didn't read the article.
We wouldn't all be dead?

Probably since there are so many things folks can't live without
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#11
JoeGator

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If we are going to get an apocalyptic solar flare, I'd rather just do it big.

#12
A10Rebel

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View PostJoeGator, on 25 July 2014 - 11:21 AM, said:

If we are going to get an apocalyptic solar flare, I'd rather just do it big.

ditto to this. I'd rather not wander the earth wearing sun block 2000, with a lava suit on, and eating cockroaches the rest of my short and miserable exisitance. I'd rather just burst into flames and explode all in one fell swoop.

#13
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View PostA10Rebel, on 25 July 2014 - 12:35 PM, said:



ditto to this. I'd rather not wander the earth wearing sun block 2000, with a lava suit on, and eating cockroaches the rest of my short and miserable exisitance. I'd rather just burst into flames and explode all in one fell swoop.

Go find a brewery. They should have 10,000 gallon tanks filled with brew
Du-te la dracu 'LSU

#14
A10Rebel

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View Postbbqit, on 25 July 2014 - 12:37 PM, said:

Go find a brewery. They should have 10,000 gallon tanks filled with brew

and flame broiled drunks.

#15
DjCrenshaw

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If I can't have air conditioning during June-September, I'd rather die.

Edited by DjCrenshaw, 25 July 2014 - 12:45 PM.





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