In a world and an era where there are so many thugs, crooks, hypocrites and charlatans, where the concept of truth has become fuzzy around the edges, where murder, rape, robbery, serial-you-name-it abounds, where corruption and integrity-bending drives politics and the boardroom, and where meteorological disasters overwhelm us at a faster rate than we can get our heads around, it’s not hard to fall prey to suspicions of conspiracies and expectations of total annihilation.
There’s a lust for super-stimulation – stimulation-lust on steroids. Reality shows get increasingly gruesome and exploitative and emotionally destructive, violence in movies and TV shows and video games is over the top. Violence in war is a normality, weapons of destruction are like everyday commodities. So when the sun is about to have an energetic episode, it’s not surprising that the gloom and doom brigade would come out in force.
I came across a site called solar storm warning dot com. The heading – in huge bold type – stated that “Award winning astrophysicist Alexia Demetria says our solar system is entering an interstellar energy cloud that will soon bring global catastrophe.” Well good for him, whoever he is. Wiki hasn’t heard of him. But the global catastrophe hasn’t happened yet, and isn’t really likely to.
The solar blast included a flare of fast moving radioactive particles and a release of gas and magnetic particles from the outer sun, moving at 5 million miles an hour. That’s some blast. It puts all the force and violence humans are capable of into perspective. Some of the radiation hit the earth on Monday, but the coronal mass ejection (gas and magnetic particles) hit the earth’s magnetic field on Tuesday, amplifying the radiation storm, making it the strongest since 2003.
Nothing catastrophic has happened, though, and NASA has said that a radiation storm can’t hurt humans on earth, although passengers in planes might be at a higher radiation risk than normal. Which is why some airlines took the precaution of re-routing trans-polar flights today. So all the disaster theorists are going to be disappointed again.
So instead of catastrophe, we’ve got a thing of great beauty and splendor. NASA said that the eruption may spark off an unusually strong display of both the Northern and the Southern Lights, which might be seen much further south and north than normal. Follow this link to a cnn.com page which has the most incredible images. Awe-inspiring.
- NOAA: Largest Solar Radiation Storm Since 2005 Now in Progress (geologyfreak.wordpress.com)
- Airline Diverts Flights As Solar Storm Hits (news.sky.com)
- Massive solar eruption sends radiation storm towards Earth (theinformativereport.com)
- A massive solar eruption may lead to the strongest radiation storm in seven years [Space] (io9.com)