Furnace Creek in California’s Death Valley lived up to its name on Sunday, when the mercury soared to 54.4 degrees Celsius, possibly the highest temperature on record on Earth. The surprising reading came at 3:41 a.m. amid a historic heat wave in the western United States, according to the National Weather Service.
If verified, it would break the previous August Death Valley record by three degrees. It would also be among the three highest temperatures ever measured on Earth in recorded history and, in fact, could be the highest.
The desert in eastern California holds the record for the highest temperature ever recorded on the planet – 56.6 degrees Celsius – which the United States Met Office recorded on July 10, 1913 at Furnace Creek. Some experts believed that the 53.8 degrees Celsius recorded in Death Valley on June 30, 2013 and in Kuwait and Pakistan in 2016 and 2017, respectively, are the highest ever reliably measured on Earth.
But if Sunday’s 54.4 degrees Celsius is confirmed, this would be the highest officially recorded temperature on the planet since 1931, and the third highest since 1873. But while experts point out that the culprit for these hellish temperatures is warming global derived from human action, the true origin could be another.
The National Office for Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has warned that a recently discovered solar flare has turned into a dangerous coronal mass ejection (CME) and could impact Earth this Thursday.
Imminent solar flame
Data analyzed by the National Office for Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) revealed that Earth could be hit by a coronal mass ejection (CME) on Thursday. The CME came from a slowly developing solar flare that was recently detected by the agency.
NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) Estimates Center recently detected the formation of a solar flare on the sun using its geostationary operational environmental satellite. According to SWPC data, the solar flare has been developing in recent days, and experts predicted that it would eventually become a CME.
Tracking the solar emission showed that it has become a CME after a magnetic filament, which is a looped structure composed of dense gas, broke on the surface of the sun. SpaceWeather.com confirmed that the remains of the filament formed the core of the CME, which currently travels through space. After analyzing the trajectory of the CME, NOAA predicted that solar emission will likely hit Earth on Thursday.
Direct hit or near miss? NASA & NOAA #solarstorm predictions show flanking impact at Earth either late on Aug 19 or midday Aug 20! Either way, expect #aurora possible to mid-latitudes. Also, amateur #radio & #GPS reception issues likely on Earth's night side once the storm hits! pic.twitter.com/AUlRrpQxOt
— Dr. Tamitha Skov (@TamithaSkov) August 17, 2020
If a direct collision occurs, the event will cause disruptions in the Earth’s magnetic field. It could also trigger polar lights and geomagnetic storms in areas that will be affected by the solar event. The SWPC wanted to be cautious and noted that the CME was created by a class B1 solar flare, which is the weakest type. This means that a minor geomagnetic storm would only occur if the CME hit Earth.
“Clearly, the solar storm is not heading directly to Earth.”explained SpaceWeather.com. “However, NOAA models of the CME trajectory suggest that it could hit Earth’s magnetic field on August 20. Minor geomagnetic storms and high-latitude auroras are possible when CME arrives. “
According to the SWPC, geomagnetic storms affect the Earth producing various changes within the planet’s magnetosphere. These changes, which include the transfer of energy from the solar wind or CME to the magnetic field, can trigger electrical charges that can disrupt radio communications and electricity-based operations on Earth. In other words, severe geomagnetic storms can cause power outages and disable satellite and radio communications for extended periods.
A new Carrington Event?
The largest solar storm on record occurred in 1859. That storm was named the Carrington Event, in honor of British astronomer Richard Carrington, who witnessed the mega flare and was the first to realize the link between activity on the sun and geomagnetic disturbances in the earth. During the Carrington Event, the northern lights were recorded as far south as Cuba and Honolulu, while the southern lights were seen as far north as Santiago, Chile. The flares were so powerful that the people of the northeastern United States could read the print of newspapers only in the light of dawn.
Additionally, the geomagnetic disturbances were strong enough for US telegraph operators to report sparks coming from their equipment, some strong enough to start fires. In 1859, such reports were mainly trivia. But if something similar happened today, global technology infrastructure could be paralyzed. Now think for a moment, if a Carrington Event-type solar storm impacted right now, with dependence on technology, especially the Internet, and during the coronavirus pandemic, What would happen? Nobody knows, but it would be the closest thing to an apocalypse.
Are you prepared for the arrival of the solar flare? And not to depend on technology?