Carrington Event Exercise Revisited

If the readers wondered why the exercise seemed to end rather abruptly, well it did so due to what we perceived to be an unfortunate utter lack of interest. We can only speculate as to the reason(s) for that lack of interest, but if it was due to something akin to a “normalcy bias,” wherein the readers thought the scenario too unlikely, then let’s take a look at today’s Solar Weather.

As it turns out there were two, closely spaced X-Class events (as was the case in the original Carrington Event). Even though they occurred on the advancing Solar limb just within view of our sensing systems essentially at a right angle away from Earth, they both still caused significant radio blackouts across most of the Sun facing hemisphere.

These flares peaked at about X2 levels which, had they been Earth facing, the resulting double coronal mass ejections (CME) “shots” arriving at the Earth in three to four days would have resulted in additional, disruptive effects. They would  have at least caused significant ionization of Earth’s atmosphere resulting in geomagnetic storms and auroral events. Such was the case with the Carrington Event except that those flares were probably somewhat higher on the X scale. Bear in mind that X2 is on the lower end of the X scale yet today’s effects were more than noticeable despite NOT being Earth facing.

So, the moral of the story is “Never Say Never.” The overall chance of 12% occurrence is really not something to take lightly considering the extremely dangerous ramifications to our technologically dependent society.

Thanks for your interest.

The following two videos discuss these flares in detail.