People of Northwest Public Radio
Tue January 24, 2012
Massive Solar Storm Causes Planes To Be Rerouted
Originally published on Tue January 24, 2012 4:13 pm
You might have heard about a major solar storm that is hitting Earth right now. It's the biggest to hit us since 2005. You've also probably heard a few people say, "I didn't feel anything."
As our friends at 13.7 explained earlier today, the storms have the ability to disrupt sensitive electronics and even the power grid. Usually none of those things happen. But, today's solar storm did cause a bit of disruption.
As Fox Business reports, Delta Air Lines rerouted at least six planes that were supposed to cross the North Pole. Fox explains:
"There is no risk to people on Earth, Doug Biesecker of the NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center told FoxNews.com.
"But as a rare precaution, some polar flights were re-routed to avoid communication lapses and exposing pilots and passengers to excessive radiation.
"'We know that some airlines did not fly the polar routes yesterday,' Biesecker told FoxNews.com. Delta is one of them, rerouting flights between Hong Kong and the U.S. that usually fly over the pole."
Besides the rerouting, the solar storm also produced some spectacular northern lights. MSNBC's Photoblog has some images of the auroras.