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Protecting communications from the next Carrington Event


Protecting communications from the next Carrington Event. Post 2021.
Source:  https://www.universetoday.com/143677/power-grids-and-satellites-are-more-at-risk-from-extreme-solar-storms-than-we-thought/
Accessed on 14 October 2019, 0450 UTC, Post 2021.
Please click the above link to read the full story.

Summary:

Most radio amateurs have heard about the devastating effects of the 1859 Carrington Event which destroyed much of the world's rudimentary telegraph systems of that time. 

A renewed study of that solar event has painted a grim picture of what a similar event could do to our modern world, which is so dependent on sensitive digital devices.  Extreme solar storms and coronal mass ejections could  make many of our solid-state devices inoperable.  The threat to our health care and transportation infrastructure would be severe.

Scientists and researchers studying the Carrington Event believe similar solar outbursts occuring in 1872, 1909, 1921, and 1989 were almost as strong as the original 1859 disturbance.  In fact, the 1989 coronal mass ejection crippled part of Quebec, Canada's electric grid, leaving many of our northern neighbors without power for several hours.

In this article from "Universe Today", we get a renewed picture of what awaits us if we don't do something to "harden" and protect our power grid, communications infrastructure, and medical care systems.

According to this sobering article, there are a few ways to begin the protection phase of our digitally-connected society:

"There are a variety of ways to protect things like transmission lines form intense solar storms. Capacitor banks, Faraday cages, and special dampening devices could all help. But none of them are a perfect solution, and one 2017 study suggested it could cost up to $30 billion dollars just to protect the power-grid in the USA.
The ESA is considering a LaGrange Mission which would give us more advance notice of dangerous CMEs. Image Credit: ESA/A. Baker, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO
The ESA is considering a LaGrange Mission which would give us more advance notice of dangerous CMEs. Image Credit: ESA/A. Baker, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO
Some scientists have floated the idea of a massive magnetic shield between the Earth and the Sun. Sitting at the Earth-Sun LaGrange Point 1, the shield would offer the same type of protection that the Earth’s magnetic field already does, but more of it. But that’s just an idea at this point.
In the mean time, the best bet is to know when a storm is coming and to shut down the power system in hopes of minimizing the damage. Future missions like the ESA’s LaGrange Mission might help with that. As far as satellites and communication systems go, protecting them is a work in progress, and nobody seems to have an answer, yet."
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How well is your ham station, your home, and neighborhood protected against future Carrington Events?  Do you have backup power?  Is your radio equipment protected? Do you have sufficient emergency supplies, including water, food, medical supplies, and sanitary disposal devices to survive the loss of power grids, internet services, and communications?
Something to think about.
Thanks for joining us today.
Aloha es 73 de Russ (KH6JRM).




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