Geomagnetic storm alert: Solar flare puts radio signals at risk as Aurora displays awaited

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A geomagnetic storm notice has been issued by space weather forecasters throughout Monday, citing the possibility of interference with radio transmissions on Earth due to a plasma explosion from a solar flare.

While the notice has been issued for the storm, the forecasters have also said that it could also make for great aurora viewing, Fox News reported.

According to an advisory issued Saturday by National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Space Weather Prediction Center in Boulder, Colorado, there is no cause for the public to be concerned.

Jonathan Lash, a forecaster at the centre, warned that the storm could disrupt high-frequency radio transmissions, potentially affecting commercial aircraft communication with traffic control towers.

He also said that satellite operators may struggle to track their spacecraft, and power grids may experience “induced current” in their lines, although this is not something they can’t handle.

"For the general public, if you have clear skies at night and you are at higher latitudes, this would be a great opportunity to see the skies light up," Lash said.

This image shows the sun seen from the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) satellite on Saturday, March 23, 2024. — Nasa/File
This image shows the sun seen from the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) satellite on Saturday, March 23, 2024. — Nasa/File

The sun’s magnetic field flips every 11 years, causing its north and south poles to shift positions.

This cycle, known as the solar maximum, leads to geomagnetic storms a few times a year, while the solar minimum may occur for a few years between storms.

In December, the biggest solar flare in years disrupted radio communications.