Solar flares could impact airline passengers, crew

solar related

x1s2_anim(WTVR) – A relatively big X1-class solar flare erupted from the Sun on January 7.

Those dangerous, high-energy particles will slam into our protective shield (the magnetosphere) today, potentially disrupting satellite and radio communications.

NOAA even warns that “passengers and crew in high-flying aircraft at high latitudes may be exposed to elevated radiation risk” during this solar storm.

This is why a planned rocket launch from Virginia’s Wallops Flight Facility was scrubbed Wednesday. The solar storm could disrupt communications during the launch between the launch vehicle, spacecraft and ground control.

An update from Orbital Sciences Corp on January 8, 2013 is as follows:

“Following a comprehensive review of data related to the radiation environment in space, further reviews and modeling of the rocket’s avionics systems, and the forecast for favorable terrestrial weather conditions at the Wallops Island launch facility, the Antares launch team has decided to proceed forward with a…

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