Scientists warn massive flares could disrupt satellites and other technology

POSTED: Thursday, March 8, 2012 - 6:45pm

UPDATED: Thursday, March 8, 2012 - 6:49pm

Scientist say the largest solar storm in years is sending a massive cloud of charged particles to Earth.

While not harmful to people, solar storms can disrupt technology from satellite feeds to power grids.

The storm is also creating a magnificent light show in the northern portions of the U.S. and Canada.

Researchers say there are no reports this magnetic storm triggered by the solar bursts caused any disruptions to high-frequency communication for airlines and emergency agencies, power grid systems and GPS satellites.

Still, some airlines made temporary route changes.

The latest solar flares, some of the most dramatic in a decade, are part of a series of solar storms scientists are tracking closely.

In the past few months the beauty of the night skies have outweighed any of the potential problems.

Those solar burst particles are creating more brilliant auroras in the northern hemisphere.

Experts say those vibrant views might even be viewable in unexpected parts of the country.

Scientists say the sun enters an active period, like we are seeing, every 11 years.

It is forecast to reach its peak in its current cycle sometime next year.

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