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Solar storms and electronics

  1. Aug 8, 2009 #1
    I have heard that a significant coronal mass ejection or solar storm can knock out the power grid.
    Can such an event damage all types of electronics making anything with a circuit board useless?
    Would motorcycles with magnetos still run?

    (I might ask this question in an electrical engineer forum)
  2. jcsd
  3. Aug 12, 2009 #2
    More importantly, what's going to happen to the millions of hybrid electric cars we're going to have in a few years.? The next solar cycle is on its way. :biggrin:
    I'm keeping my Hummer just in case. :biggrin:

  4. Aug 13, 2009 #3
    Solar storms are made up of two main phenomenal: soalr flares and coronal mass ejections. Solar Flares are sudden and short-lived enhancements acorss the electromagnetic spectrum. The solar atmosphere gets heated up to 30 or 40 million degrees during a flare and electrons and protons can be accelerated to speeds very close to the speed of light. Coronal Mass Ejections are expulsions of material from the Sun caused by the rapid release of energy in the solar atmosphere. For the largest storms, satellite electronics can be short-circuited, currents can be induced in ground-based electrical systems and the radiation dose for high altitude air crews and astronauts can reach dangerous levels.
    Good resource when teaching sight words
  5. Aug 14, 2009 #4


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    There is no fossil evidence coronal mass ejections have significantly affected life on earth. Of course, electronics could be a different story. There is no fossil evidence of electronic devices in earth's history. I say that somewhat tongue in cheek, but, who knows?
  6. Aug 14, 2009 #5

    A New Yorker archeologist dug 15 feet under New York city subways and reported , " We have found undergound telecommunication cables 15 feet underground, proof that New Yorkers had telephones 100 years ago".

    Not to be out done, the next week, a Cailfornia archeologist reported; " We have dug down 25 feet under Los Angeles and discovered telecommunication cables, proof that Californians had telephones 150 years ago."

    The next week, a Texan archeologists reported: " We have dug down 50 feet under Abilene, Texas and found NOTHING;...proof that Texans had wireless communication 200 years ago."

    Creator :biggrin:

    - "The Works of the Lord are great, studied by all who have pleasure therein." - Inscibed in the Archway of the Entrance to James Clerk Maxwell's Cavendish Laboratory - Cambridge
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