Scientists Warn Biggest Solar Storm in 20 Years Could Wipe Out Internet and Phones Today

Scientists Warn Biggest Solar Storm in 20 Years Could Wipe Out Internet and Phones Today

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has issued a stark warning regarding an imminent ‘severe’ solar storm, which could lead to significant technological disruptions including internet and phone blackouts. This severe geomagnetic storm, predicted to hit later today, is noted to be the most substantial in nearly two decades and follows the convergence of two massive sunspots that have released multiple solar flares, escalating the potential for disruption.

According to NOAA, the merging of these sunspots has produced several coronal mass ejections (CMEs), with two identified as X-class flares, the largest category. These flares have the capacity to impact Earth’s magnetic field significantly, leading to varied technological disturbances. The potential effects of these CMEs include disruptions in GPS systems, satellite communications, and high-frequency radio signals, which could lead to a range of issues from navigation errors to communication blackouts.

Beyond the technological impacts, such disturbances are known to cause natural phenomena such as the aurora borealis, or northern lights, which may be visible across several U.S. states and parts of Canada. While the magnetic storm poses no direct threat to human health, its capacity to disrupt daily activities and technologies could have considerable short-term consequences.

This significant solar activity highlights the ongoing need for vigilance in monitoring space weather due to its potential to impact Earth’s technology-dependent systems. The NOAA continues to track these developments closely, offering updates and guidance on how to manage and mitigate the effects of these geomagnetic disturbances.

As we anticipate the arrival of the storm, it’s a reminder of the profound influence that solar activity can have on our planet, affecting everything from the spectacular display of the northern lights to the foundational systems of our communications and navigation technologies.