Scientists have found evidence of a mega-blast of radiation from the Sun that hit Earth more than 2,500 years ago.
The researchers behind the new international study, led by researchers from Lund University, have found evidence in Greenland ice core samples that suggest a very powerful solar storm occurred in 660 BCE.
This storm would likely not have shown any appreciable signs to people alive at the time, other than associated geomagnetic storms triggering strong aurorae at abnormally low latitudes. However, “If that solar storm had occurred today, it could have had severe effects on our high-tech society,” says Raimund Muscheler, professor of geology at Lund University.
Researchers have also identified two other large events from the past, which left evidence in both Greenland ice cores and tree rings. One of these, which occurred between 774 and 775AD, was comparable in its magnitude to the one in 660BC.
Scientists are now working to understand how common the extreme events are, something that could help us plan for big solar storms in future. And as our sun exits solar minimum of cycle 24 and begins its ramp-up towards solar max of cycle 25, some are calling this as the possible date for the next big bombardment — around 2023.
Evidence suggests our magnetosphere is waning fast due to two independent factors occurring simultaneously: a Grand Solar Minimum + Pole Shift. With our shields greatly diminishing, and with no reversal to that trend in sight, any solar outburst will have an even larger affect on our planet and the fragile modern infrastructure we’ve built upon it.
For the scientific paper, click here.
Grand Solar Minimum + Pole Shift
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