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A solar storm from 14,300 years ago previews how Earth may one day plunge into darkness

When the Sun suddenly erupts, it creates what’s known as solar flares and coronal mass ejections — and they can cause a lot of mischief when the resultant electromagnetic radiation reaches Earth. One particularly intense geomagnetic storm in 1859, the so-called Carrington Event, knocked out telegraph lines and tricked many people into thinking it was morning at 1 a.m....

Originally posted on salon.com

Funky space weather causes navigation problems in birds, study finds

Space weather is exactly what it sounds like: variations in the environment between Earth and the Sun, influenced by factors like solar wind and the ionosphere, the buzzing layer of the atmosphere that is ionized by solar radiation. Birds rely on the Earth’s magnetic field to navigate, yet until recently it was unclear whether space weather could make it more difficult for these same birds to fly....

Originally posted on salon.com