A solar flare swept across the Earth less than 10,000 years ago

A solar flare swept across the Earth less than 10,000 years ago

The Sun is in the grip of violent eruptions, one of which, particularly memorable, dates from 9,200 years ago.

If there’s one thing astronauts on the ISS fear more than space debris, it’s solar flares. These are quite unpredictable and although rarely dangerous, they could have very serious consequences in certain scenarios. Indeed, these eruptions can, depending on their power, have more or less repercussions on Earth.

According to a study published by researchers at the University of Lund, Sweden, a large-scale eruption hit the Earth just under 10,000 years ago. According to scientists, this eruption took place precisely 9,200 years ago. To find out, they went in search of ice cores in remote areas of Greenland and Antarctica.

Within this ice, they managed to find beryllium and chlorine ions. Two particles which are emitted in large quantities during a solar flare and which are characteristic of this phenomenon. A discovery all the more surprising given that the Sun was normally quite calm at this period of its life, and solar flares, especially large ones, generally only occur when the star is unstable, especially at the beginning of its life. .

An eruption of this magnitude could send us back to the Middle Ages

The researchers estimate that if such a solar eruption were to happen today, it would have very serious consequences. Power outages would indeed be very numerous, almost everywhere on the surface of the globe. Scientists also believe that the satellites would be very strongly impacted by such an eruption, they who would not have the atmosphere to reduce the violence of the phenomenon.

In the most pessimistic hypotheses, solar flares could completely destroy our modern communication systems, completely unusable after the passage of the solar “wave”. If for the moment this scenario is more than unlikely, large-scale solar flares are not common, we must still protect ourselves against them, and several solutions are currently being studied to protect the Earth and the environment. mankind from these eruptions.

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