A big solar storm could disrupt the global internet

A solar storm of great strength can touch the Earth during the peak of the star’s activity. Excessive current may affect submarine cables and cause massive disturbances in the network.

Solar flares or storms They are perfectly normal events in our star’s life cycle. These are projections of substances resulting from the accumulation of energy in certain areas. In most cases, these expectations are not a problem.

credit: NASA

However, sometimes some storms are strong enough to reach us. Our atmosphere and magnetosphere protect us from the most dangerous influences, But astronauts are not immune to infection Flight crews are sometimes exposed to more radiation than usual.

Risk of damage due to electromagnetism

If the most harmful rays are already reduced by our natural shield, it does not prevent Strong electromagnetic disturbances that can have consequences for our way of life.

In 1989, one of its storms hit the Earth and caused The blackout that lasted just over 9 hours in Quebec. Electromagnetic disturbances caused overvoltages due to exposure of transmission cables, triggering safety devices.

Most major Internet lines today operate using optical fibers. The peculiarity of these fibers is the use of an optical rather than an electrical signal to transmit information. againstThis mode of transmission makes it particularly resistant to magnetic interference.

Anxiety will come submarine cables. These also use optical fibers, but the distance to travel is so long that many electronic boxes act as relays. The principle is to have a box that captures the light signal and is able to amplify it to spread it to the next relay. it takes Highly precise electronic devices are particularly sensitive to disturbances.

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Strong LAN, but fragile long-distance connections

Earth is already approaching a major catastrophe. In 2014, NASA announced thatAn unprecedented storm could have hit the Earth in 2012 and set our civilization back centuries. A storm of this magnitude could cause damage estimated to cost more than $2 trillion.

This time, University of California researcher Abdu Jyoti has sounded the alarm about the situation. According to the world, The global communications structure is unable to handle a major solar event. If LANs are fairly robust by their design, submarine cables especially those in the Atlantic and Pacific oceans that pass at higher latitudes (i.e. relatively close to the poles) are particularly vulnerable.

The United States would be the most exposed in the event of a solar storm, which could break off from Europe and Asia while the rest of the world will experience little disruption (with the exception of Western Europe).

So the priority according to the world is preparation, quicklyAnd For this type of scenario In order to be able to respond quickly after the disaster despite the difficulty of communication. This preparation is more important as the solar maximum approaches, that is, a period of more intense activity. By 2023, the first severe solar storms could hit us. In the year 2025, the sun will reach its maximum activity peak for the current cycle before subsiding for a few years.

Source : arstechnica

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