Solar Storm

Well this week so far has been interesting. As I'm sure many of you know, there was a solar flare on Sunday at approx 2300hrs which has been causing the largest solar storm since 2005. What you may or may not know though, is Space Weather is part of my job and since I have received several emails about the Solar Storms I thought I would elaborate a bit further!

The solar flare was an M-9 eruption which is only one stage below the most powerful type which is an X-class flare. As a result of this flare, the earth is being bombarded by three waves of solar storms from the sun. The first, Earth was being hit by electromagnetic radiation, next was a flood of protons and, finally, a coronal mass ejection (CME). The CME struck the Earth’s magnetic field at approximately 1000EST.

Something you may or may not know about Alert is we are actually too far North to witness any of the Auroras. The only effects of the solar storm we received were several communication outages, our polar-travelling planes being unable to contact different countries HF comms and chatter from thousands of miles away on our air to ground radio frequencies.

The charts above show the observed (o) and forecasted  (f) impact on different operations. Today, January 25, 2012 there were 1272 potentially hazardous asteroids forecasted to be hurtling towards earth. It has been interesting to see exactly how much the Sun impacts us (even when we can't see it!) and has definitely been an exciting week in the world of space!

34 days until the sun rises... Not that anyone is counting or anything!


that light in your eyes

This weekend, rather this Sunday, was exactly what I needed. Sunday I got up, did some yoga and had a shower. I had the biggest breakfast of all time (bacon strips and bacon strips and bacon strips… of course with maple syrup… lots of it I might add) and prepared myself to go ice fishing again for the second time since being here.

This time, as we pulled off the road and onto the beaten path, the twilight over the hills was just stunning. It was so blue it almost hurt your eyes, mesmerizing even. It’s funny how being in the dark can make you appreciate even the faintest glow of light. This made me reflect on the bad week I was having and realize that even in the darkest places in a persons soul there is still a bit of light. I found this Albert Schweitzman quote:

“Sometimes our light goes out, but is blown again into instant flame by an encounter with another human being”

I really found truth in this statement when I spent Sunday afternoon with my favorite people sharing laughs, star gazing and running around with sparklers into the darkness. People are truly the spirit here and certainly this Sunday raised my morale enough that my cheeks hurt from smiling.

I saw a shooting star that afternoon and amazingly enough was able to capture it on my camera. As for my wish? I didn’t bother. My only wish last week was to find internal happiness again and there I did, in the dark, watching the light slowly make its way into my life again, one shade of blue at a time.