EntertainmentInternet apocalypse looms": scientist warns of severe solar storms threatening global connectivity

Internet apocalypse looms": scientist warns of severe solar storms threatening global connectivity

Increased solar activity can lead to a magnetic storm? That's what Peter Becker claims.
Increased solar activity can lead to a magnetic storm? That's what Peter Becker claims.
Images source: © X
7:43 AM EST, February 23, 2024

For many of us, a day without internet access is unimaginable. It's not merely about navigating websites or social media. The pervasiveness of technology that relies on internet connectivity affects nearly every aspect of our daily activities. The mayhem ensuing from an Internet loss is not difficult to envisage.

Regrettably, this is a contingency we must brace for. Peter Becker of George Mason University cautions that the Sun is transitioning into a period of augmented activity, signifying a heightened risk of formidable magnetic storms. The scientist suggests that a storm potent enough to compromise the Internet structure could occur this year, depriving us of network access for several weeks or even months.

Increased solar activity may challenge our dependency on the Internet — the scientist stated.

Professor Becker's predictions stem from the observation of phenomena known as solar flares. Initially, the Sun shines brighter, followed by a coronal mass ejection. These events can occur in various directions and typically do not pose a severe threat to our planet. However, the escalating frequency of these flares enhances the likelihood of one endangering our magnetosphere. The Internet infrastructure stands to be the most at risk.

Are we on the threshold of an "Internet apocalypse"?

Previously, our planet has contended with powerful electromagnetic storms. One such occurrence was in the early days of September 1859, which not only resulted in a global aurora spectacle but also caused telegraph network failures across Europe and North America. In certain locations, telegraph paper was even ignited.

In the present time, a similarly powerful electromagnetic storm would lead to even more severe consequences. It would wreck telecommunications and satellite networks, leaving us without internet access and disrupting power supply.

We're looking at a potential situation that could genuinely incapacitate the system for a number of weeks or possibly months, factoring in the time cycle needed for infrastructure repair — Becker insists.

According to his projections, there's about a 10 percent likelihood that a powerful magnetic storm will make a direct hit on our planet this year.

Related content