Solar storm warning: Storm bombarding Earth at 500,000 metres per SECOND | Science | News

On June 18, Earth’s path crossed with a stream of cosmic particles unleashed by a solar flare from the surface of the sun.

Scientists say the intense solar particles are bombarding Earth at a whopping 500,000 metres per second – a fraction of the speed of light which travels at 299,792,458 metres per second.

According to the website Space Weather: “Earth is moving deeper into a stream of solar wind that arrived during the early hours of Monday June 18.

“This is causing the solar wind near our planet to quicken, blowing faster than 500 km/s (1.1 million mph).”

For the most part, the Earth’s magnetic field protects humans from the barrage of radiation that comes with solar storms, but they can affect satellite-based technology.

Solar winds can heat the Earth’s outer atmosphere, causing it to expand.

This can affect satellites in orbit, potentially leading to a lack of GPS navigation, mobile phone signal and satellite TV such as Sky.

Additionally, a surge of particles can lead to high currents in the magnetosphere, which can lead to higher than normal electricity in power lines, resulting in electrical transformers and power stations blow outs and a loss of power.

The higher amounts of radiation also leave people vulnerable to cancer.

However, researchers state this is unlikely to happen in this instance, but sky watchers could be treated to Aurora Australis, or southern lights – geometric storms in the southern hemisphere.

Space Weather continues: “High latitude sky watchers should remain alert for auroras, especially in the southern hemisphere where winter darkness favours visibility.”

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