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Geomagnetic Storm to hit North America

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  • Geomagnetic Storm to hit North America

    A10 second blurb on the news this morning. Newscaster said a large hole had opened up in the Sun's cornea and a moderate geomagnetic storm was to hit North America today. Said it could effect satellite tv and power.Was issued by National Oceanic & Atmospheric Administration ...aka NOAA
    .Being remiss in keeping up with sunspots and such I went at once to Space Weather site. It said the hole opened up yesterday and the storm was to hit Sept 16th. The site has changed it's format since my last visit and I haven't had time to peruse and learn all the new stuff. Besides due to my recent eye surgery I can't spend much time on the computer without my eyes tearing up and making reading difficult. So
    If anyone else can gain more info from anywhere reliable please let me know.
    Last edited by ZAGran; 09-12-2018, 07:57 AM. Reason: spelling

  • #2
    http://spaceweather.com/

    Big coronal hole, should provide splendid aurora, but no 'Carrington'...

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    • #3
      Did not hear about that. Good to know. I do know I had a lot of problems with internet here cutting in and out for past couple of days. But then our cable sucks and we need to change companies. Just not sure who at this point.

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      • #4
        This planet (Earth) needs a Carrington event...........urgently.
        One day you eat the chicken.....next day the left-over chicken.....next five days you eat chicken feathers, head and feet.

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        • #5
          Its a run of the mill G class storm.. they happen all the time.

          When you see them classified as X class (with a number) then you should take notice.. X-1 to X-10 causes problems.. X-10 to X-25 causes big problems, and anything stronger than X-25 can turn the grid off for years.

          Like a bullet, the location of the hit and size of the caliber mean a lot.. An X-5 or X-10 glancing blow to earth won't do much but knock out power or communications to local areas.. (think Quebec 1989).... serious damage but its localized. However, an X-10 class that hits us center-mass could cause some major disruptions over much wider area's like entire continents.

          Up the power a bit to something like an X-25 (think Carrington Event), and that could take down the electrical grid across most of the planet as the Earth's magnetic field would be affected on even the dark side.

          The only good news is that anything NOT connected to the power grid wouldn't be affected and we'd have a lot of warning to prepare. Cars would still work. I would think that if NASA saw a strong X class heading toward us, the utility companies would start opening switches and isolating the largest transformers and initiate intentional blackouts.

          For smaller direct hits, counter intuitively, they do the exact opposite and they turn everything on to absorb the hit.

          Solar flares don't worry me too much.. Even a Carrington level event would be recoverable as vehicles still run and trains and ships still move. It would totally suck for a year or two and lots would die, but we'd recover. Its the nuclear HEMP that would destroy us because not only would it fry the grid, it would fry everything else electronic as well.



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          • #6
            Yes we will still have radios, cars, etc.

            But with loss of power - - you loose the ability to buy stuff; including gas (No autos after the first month) no water (after pumps and generators run out of power max of 5 days) no grocery store (they keep only a 3 days supply on hand) So after 20+ days you have no water, waste water disposal, or food....

            So where is the good news about a solar event????

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            • #7
              I didn't say it was good, I said it wasn't nearly as bad. Interestingly, in the case of a solar event, it wouldn't be difficult to get the internet up and running again as computers would still work once the power supplies were replaced.

              Solar event only damages things plugged into the grid, Nuclear EMP kills everything, plugged in or not.

              Generators can be made to run on wood gas easily enough if one knows how.. Biodiesel is easy to make as is pyrolysis generated diesel fuel from plastics.. but none of that works if a Nuclear EMP burns out the diode bridge rectifier in your generator head. The engine will run, but the generator head is blown.
              I actually have an extra capacitor and bridge rectifier for mine sitting in a Faraday cage. Found the part numbers and ordered spares from DigiKey for $8.00.

              As for me, I have a large solar array that powers my entire home.... we waste electricity like most people waste water.. if a solar storm was coming, I'd just unplug it from the grid and switch over to off grid operation. Heck, the thing generates enough power to run my home and probably three or four neighbors, and I have almost as many spare panels in a Faraday cage in the basement along with the off grid hardware.

              Solar Event = Bad.. but a Nuclear EMP = Catastrophically Bad.

              Personally, and you wouldn't find this written down anywhere, but I think if NASA saw a large X Class flare heading our way, the government would have the utility companies shut down everything they could for a day.. Heck, we'd be better off sending out attack helicopters to shoot down some transmission lines to isolate stuff. Even at the cost of a few lives or some damage. Better to have it off for a day or a month than half a decade. An isolated transformer just sitting on a concrete pad isn't going to be damaged by a solar flare..

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              • #8
                IIRC, after Quebec, a controlled shut-down as the ground-loops develop is the plan.

                Some links now have upgraded ground-loop breakers etc, I've read, so their transformers can tolerate more low-frequency stuff. But, they are expensive, rare and probably restricted to 'critical paths'.

                Safer and more reliable to close down entire areas for the duration. Just hope it does not coincide with an ice-storm...

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