Mark Sircus. IMVA

On June 7th, Dr. C. Alex Young from the NASA Goddard  Space Flight Center woke to an email from a friend saying, “I have never seen  anything like this before.” There are many things happening around us that we  have not seen before but when it happens on the sun certain people take notice.  On the 7th the sun produced a prominence eruption and Dr. Young had never seen  such a spectacular event, which luckily did not affect the space weather near Earth.

The huge storm unleashed what some have  called the most  massive eruption of solar plasma ever seen. NASA astronomers said the huge June 7 solar  eruption, called a coronal mass ejection (CME), was notable both for its size  and its odd behavior, as massive waves of plasma roared off the sun only to  rain back down on the solar surface. “We’re seeing things we’ve never seen  before,” said Phillip Chamberlin, an astrophysicist at NASA’s Goddard  Spaceflight Center and a deputy project scientist on the agency’s Solar  Dynamics Observatory (SDO) satellite. “It’s a really exciting event. There are  a lot of exceptions to it.”

In 2008-2009,  solar activity plunged to a hundred-year low;
and now that the sun is waking up again, no one is able to
predict what will happen next. “Will solar activity continue to be
sluggish, or will solar storms return with pent-up vigor?”

Space Weather

NASA says the flare peaked Tuesday the 7th  and created a large cloud that appeared to cover almost half the surface of the  sun. Images were recorded by the orbiting satellite called the Solar Dynamics  Observatory. A news release said the solar energy released by the event should  deliver a “glancing blow” to Earth’s magnetic field on Wednesday or Thursday.  But it’s not expected to cause a major impact here. The National Weather  Service is predicting minor effects on satellites and weak impacts on some  power grids.

A CME is a  massive explosive eruption on the solar surface. These gigantic explosions are  an indication that solar activity on our star is ramping up and one day planet  Earth’s lucky streak of near-misses will run out and we will be broad-sided  with one of these super-coronal explosions.

Solar activity is  intensifying and a breakout of sunspots now dot the solar surface. On March 19, 2011 a  huge filament of magnetism and hot plasma blasted off the sun’s southwestern  limb. Many amateur astronomers in Europe witnessed the blast and said it was  the biggest one they’d ever seen. This event continues the recent trend of  increasing solar activity, and shows anew that Solar  Cycle 24 is gaining steam after a long period of relative  quiet.

The solar storm of  1859, also known as the Solar Superstorm or the Carrington Event that occurred during solar cycle 10, was the most powerful solar storm in recorded history, and the largest flare,  observed by Richard  Christopher Carrington, became known as the Carrington Super  Flare. Telegraph systems all over Europe and North America  failed in some cases even shocking telegraph operators. Telegraph pylons threw sparks and telegraph  paper spontaneously caught fire. Some telegraph systems appeared to  continue to send and receive messages despite having been disconnected from  their power supplies.

A severe solar  storm on the magnitude of the Carrington Event or larger today would neutralize  nearly electrical appliance on Earth—computers, internet, cell phones,  satellites, ATMs, air-conditioning systems, electrical grids, or those items  found in hospitals, water-treatment plants, etc.—we could lose it all in a  flash and studies show a full recovery from an extremely severe solar storm  could take many years.

As 2011 has  unfolded, sunspots have returned and they are crackling with activity. On  February 15th and again on March 9th, Earth-orbiting satellites detected a pair  of “X-class” solar flares—the most powerful kind of x-ray flare.

Could a  super-storm destroy civilization as we know it? No less than NASA thinks it’s a  distinct possibility. In a remarkable move the normally conservative U.S. space  agency has taken the extraordinary step of warning the world. The headlines  reverberating around the world speak volumes: “Leaks discovered in Earth’s  magnetic field,” “Solar storms to wreak havoc,” “The end of life as we know  it,” “Magnetic shift to cause global super-storms.”

And the fourth  angel poured out his vial upon the Sun;
and power was given unto him to scorch men with fire.
And men were scorched with a great heat.
Revelation 16:8,9.

Can such things  really happen? NASA and the European Space Agency say yes. Among all the  countries with exposure to the solar devastation, the United States is the most  susceptible. As The Daily Telegraph recently  observed: “National power grids could overheat and air travel severely  disrupted while electronic items, navigation devices and major satellites could  stop working after the Sun reaches its maximum power…”

Experts on the  sun are very concerned as they see the sun awaking from its unusually long  slumber with a violence unseen for generations. That violence is in the form of  mammoth magnetic storms. Those storms hitting the Earth will be like a giant’s  fist slamming into the fragile electronic technology that runs the world. “We  know it is coming but we don’t know how bad it is going to be,” Dr. Richard  Fisher, the director of NASA’s Heliophysics division, said in an interview with The Daily Telegraph.  “It will disrupt communication devices such as satellites and car navigation,  air travel, the banking system, our computers, everything that is electronic. It  will cause major problems for the world.”

You will hear of  a dwelling-place in the
heavens, above the earth, that shall fall with
a great crash. It will appear as a blue star.

Hopi signs

Since the sun’s  last upheaval caused worldwide disruption and destruction in 1859, civilization  has rapidly advanced a society based on a technological infrastructure that can  be whisked away in moments by a severe geomagnetic storm. During 2008, the National  Academy of Sciences issued a dire  report: “Severe Space Weather Events—Societal and Economic Impacts.” The report  outlined in excruciating detail the potential demise of America’s 21st century  technological base. Cities will be left without light  and water, and food will run out. Civil unrest will surge as society collapses.

Officials in  Britain and the United States are preparing to make controlled power cuts to  their national electricity supplies in response to a warning of a possible  powerful solar storm hitting the Earth. In an interview with The Independent, Thomas Bogdan,  director of the U.S. Space Weather Prediction Centre, said that controlled  power “outages” will protect the National Electricity Grids against damage  which could take months or even years to repair should a large solar storm  collide with the Earth without any precautions being taken.

Dr. Bogdan is in  close discussions with scientists in the U.K. Met Office to set up a second  space weather prediction center in Britain to co-ordinate a global response to  a threat viewed seriously by both the U.S. and U.K. governments. One topic of  discussion is how to protect national electricity grids from the immense power  surges caused by the geomagnetic storms that happen when highly energetic solar  particles collide with the Earth’s magnetic field.

“The most  vulnerable parts of the grid are the hundreds of transformers connected to  power lines many miles long that can experience sudden current surges during a  geomagnetic solar storm. It points to a potential scenario where large parts of  either North America or northern Europe may be without power from between days  or weeks, to perhaps months and, in extreme cases, there are estimates that it  could last years,” Dr. Bogdan said.

The March 5, 2011 sunspots  1164 and 1166 were so large people were noticing them at sunrise and sunset  when the sun was dimmed by clouds and haze. The dark cores of these regions are  many times wider than Earth so they are conspicuous even from a distance of 93  million miles.

The strongest  solar flare in four years disrupted radio communications in southern China in  February of 2011, according to the China Meteorological Administration. NASA  says that “X-class flares are the most powerful of all solar events that can trigger  radio blackouts and long-lasting radiation storms, disrupting  telecommunications and electric grids,” NASA said. Solar flares are classified  as A, B, C, M or X, with each class having a peak 10 times greater than the  preceding one.