My father was a meteorologist for most of his career in the Air Force, but toward the end, he was asked to cross train to become an astro-geophysicist so that he could move his family to Hawaii and work at the Palehua Solar Observatory to forecast the weather of the sun.

Yes, boo hoo…we were all very sad about having to move to Hawaii.

But it was an important job for the Air Force. A solar flare interrupting satellite communications can really ruin your day.

I wish he could have been around to see the solar flare that erupted on Monday,
October 23.

 

The flare was the largest one to erupt from an extremely active outburst region on the sun. It measured as an X1.8 magnitude on the NASA solar-flare scale. X-Class storms are the most intense storms generated by the sun – strong enough to cause radio blackouts and interfere with GPS signals.

There may be even bigger ones to come. The outbursts appear to be strengthening as the sun moves into an even more active part of its 11-year solar storm cycle.

It’s a good thing I wasn’t driving anywhere. Without my GPS nav system, I’d have gotten lost.

So sayeth the StickMonkey.

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