Published: Fri, March 15, 2019
Science | By Michele Flores

An Ancient Solar Storm Revealed by Greenland's Ice

An Ancient Solar Storm Revealed by Greenland's Ice

Other researchers are also working on new protection methods which should be able to shield our sensitive electronics from the harm that can be caused by the high-power particles of a strong solar storm. "Our event was about 10 times stronger than any high-energy event observed during the past 70 years", Muscheler told Newsweek. The lines and the location of these events on the surface of the sun could guide the particles towards Earth's atmosphere.

Evidence for the solar super-storm emerged from a study of 100,000-year-old ice-cores from Greenland. The upshot is that these heavy storms are occurring more regularly than we thought they were, and can be more powerful than anything we've seen in the modern era, and that affects contingency planning. Its strength also matches the world's most powerful solar storm, which struck the planet in AD 775.

A solar storm of such intensity would have the potential of wiping out large swathes of modern technology on Earth and could throw civilisation into disarray. For example, in 1989, a solar outburst blacked out the entire Canadian province of Quebec within seconds, damaging transformers as far away as New Jersey, and almost shutting down US power grids from the mid-Atlantic through the Pacific Northwest.

Researchers found radioactive elements buried beneath almost half a kilometre of ice in Greenland, which shows an "enormous" solar storm battered the planet in 660 BC.

Champions League quarter-final draw
And he would like to see Porto face Ajax in the quarters to guarantee that one of the lesser-fancied sides stays in. All the four Premier League teams competing in the Champions League this season have made it to the quarter-finals.

Android Q will break clipboard manager apps
For developers, that means supporting new paused and resumed states that allow multiple apps to work on a larger display. We expect more devices will be added to the Android Q beta before long, but for now, it's pretty much a Pixel party.

Tim Tebow Demoted to Minor League Camp by Mets
While for the moment the move is a step down for Tebow, he is just one promotion away from playing in the big leagues by starting the year in Syracuse.

The researchers believe at least 10 billion protons per square centimeter were unleashed into the atmosphere from the event. The researchers have utilized drilled specimens of ice or ice cores to search clues about former solar storms. When high energy particles slam into the stratosphere, they collide with atomic nuclei to create radioactive isotopes of elements such as carbon, beryllium and chlorine. The latter was, to date, the biggest solar event on record.

It remains unclear how these ancient proton storms compared with the Carrington Event, since estimates of the number of protons from the Carrington Event are very uncertain, Muscheler said. "There might be more that we have not yet discovered". It seems that this is the third event of this type which has been identified at this point. "I am sure these are recurring features of the sun and with a systematic search we will certainly find more", Muscheler told Newsweek.

"Our research suggests that the risks are now underestimated", Muscheler added.

According to the recent study, which was published in the journal Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, there is the possibility of another one striking.

Like this: