General Question

2TFX's avatar

How dangerous are solar flares to Earth?

Asked by 2TFX (424 points ) June 12th, 2014

Recent solar storms have made me more interested in the effects of solar maximum on our world and the possible dangers. If you can, xan you include some history of the solar maximum?

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6 Answers

Tempratt98's avatar

Uhhn well did you see the movie Knowing? There’s your answer.

Just kidding; it won’t clean life off the earth. But it will screw up our modern lifestyle.

pleiades's avatar

Well my guess is you barely found out about solar storms. Well it should be no shock that this has been happening for ages upon ages…

Here’s one example of how it goes down… Solar Storm Demonstration Video On Space From YouTube

RealEyesRealizeRealLies's avatar

I think we’ve reached our limit. One more and… flit.

elbanditoroso's avatar

It doesn’t really matter. (although, from doing some reading, they can cause weather change, radio wave distortion, and all sorts of nasty things)

Why doesn’t it matter?

Because there isn’t a damned thing we can do about it. Unlike global warming, or pollution, all of which can be in some way mitigated by mankind, solar flares are way beyond control.

cazzie's avatar

Nope, nothing can be done, but if a big enough one hit Earth we would absolutely know about it. NASA keeps a close eye on solar activity. It isn’t just the big ones that we need warning of. Because of our technology here on Earth, even regular solar flares are tracked so that we can have some forwarning here. Solar radio bursts are very problematic. Solar radio bursts are associated with solar flares and coronal mass ejections (CMEs) . Even during ‘normal’ solar flares and events, they affect the magnetic field that surrounds the Earth (that is what the Borielis is, ions from solar flares that are bent around the earth and hit atoms in the atmosphere that creates a beautiful light show.) and systems like GPS are monitored and have to be adjusted after these regular, common events. Depending on the ferocity of the explosion, the particles that affect us takes about 3 days.

If a flare is big enough, it will wipe out satellites but like I said, they are always affected. We have space weather, yo!

FireMadeFlesh's avatar

The Earth is well protected. Satellites are in more danger, as their electronic systems are at risk from any large solar flare. The worst case scenario is Kessler Syndrome, if several satellites lose navigational ability and collide with existing space junk. A really bad flare can also knock out power grids on Earth, but they are usually fixed quite quickly and easily.

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