BEWARE! Massive Solar Flare erupts on Sun, can damage your GPS

    Radiation from a strong solar flare which erupted on the Sun is headed towards the Earth and it can disrupt GPS on your phone or other gadgets. Check the details here.
    By: HT TECH
    | Updated on: Jul 19 2022, 23:33 IST
    Solar flare radiation from the Sun might affect GPS operators on the dayside of the Earth.
    Solar flare radiation from the Sun might affect GPS operators on the dayside of the Earth. (NASA/SDO)
    Solar flare radiation from the Sun might affect GPS operators on the dayside of the Earth.
    Solar flare radiation from the Sun might affect GPS operators on the dayside of the Earth. (NASA/SDO)

    A large-scale solar activity on July 15 gave rise to a powerful solar flare eruption. And it released strong electromagnetic radiation directed at the Earth which can disrupt GPS systems. In the last few days, the Earth has become a hotbed for incoming solar radiation and magnetic storms (also known as solar flares). While most of these solar storms have been G1 class and the solar flares have remained under M class, this one in particular is expected to be strong enough to disrupt GPS systems on Earth. So, whether you plan to travel in a ship or a plane or use a phone or smartwatch with GPS in it, you might face some inconveniences if you live in a region affected by this solar flare. It is expected that the radiation will hit the Earth sometime today, July 19.

    Dr Tamitha Skov, a space weather expert as her Twitter profile suggests, said on Twitter, "The long snake-like filament cartwheeled its way off the #Sun in a stunning ballet. The magnetic orientation of this Earth-directed #solarstorm is going to be tough to predict. G2-level (possibly G3) conditions may occur if the magnetic field of this storm is oriented southward!"

    Solar flare radiation is set to crash onto the Earth and affect GPS

    Solar flares, although they are born out of extremely high temperatures and nuclear combustions on the Sun, are not capable enough to burn all life on Earth due to our atmosphere which absorbs most of the harmful radiation. How solar flares cause destruction is by interfering with electronic devices, wireless signals (especially the shortwaves) and by damaging satellites. Let us understand here what NASA says about it. According to NASA, "a solar flare is an intense burst of radiation coming from the release of magnetic energy associated with sunspots. Flares are our solar system's largest explosive events. They are seen as bright areas on the sun and they can last from minutes to hours,"

    Solar flares can be divided into A, B, C, M and X categories. A, B, and C are very minor solar flares, effects of which cannot be felt on Earth. M and X and medium and strong solar flares, which can cause radio blackouts, damage to satellites and sensitive electronics on Earth, GPS disruption and damage and also cause powerful solar storms by blasting solar material called coronal mass ejections (CME) in space directed towards the Earth.

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    First Published Date: 19 Jul, 17:13 IST
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