The United States Government is now taking the threats posed by powerful sun storms a very serious matter. Recently, the White House has released documents that lay out the country's plans to mitigate the negative effects of solar flares and other types of "space weather." These occurrences have great potential to lay waste to power grids and key infrastructure on the planet.
According to reports, the first document, called the "National Space Weather Strategy" outlines the basic framework that the federal government will take on to better understand, forecast, and recover from space-weather related events. The next document, called the "National Space Weather Action Plan' details the specific activities that are intended to help achieve its lofty goal.
"The efforts undertaken to achieve the objectives of this strategy will establish a national approach to the security and resilience in the face of our improved understanding of the seriousness of the space-weather risk, and the steps we must take to prepare for it," the United States Department of Homeland Security's National Protection and Program Directorate Undersecretary Suzanne Spaulding said.
Experts suggest that its risk is rather serious. High-energy solar flares that are targeted at Earth are possible to affect orbiting satellites that are currently in operation. Furthermore, its most powerful emissions can even pose a great risk to astronauts that are onboard the International Space Station.
Coronal mass ejections, which are huge eruptions that send clouds of solar plasma that streaks through the space at an alarming speed, is an even bigger concern - Coronal mass ejections that hit the planet can generate intense geomagnetic storms that have the potential to disrupt power grids, satellite navigation, and radio communications temporarily.