“Let’s talk about a very dangerous event, an event that might in your lifetime happen here on planet earth,” says space scientist and YouTube star Anton Petrov. “I don’t want to scare you too much but this is something you should be familiar with. So let’s talk about this unusual event known as a geomagnetic storm. This event might cause World War 3. Here is why actually it is a very potential threat to our planet.”
Anton Petrov, the host of a popular YouTube channel with nearly 600,000 subscribers and over 142 million video views, tells us in his latest video that we should all be very worried about a massive geomagnetic storm that will definitely happen in our lifetimes:
EMP Will Annihilate Technology In Just A Few Hours
What exactly are these geomagnetic storms and why are they so dangerous? You may have already heard of the so-called Carrington event that happened back in 1859. In a nutshell, it was such a powerful solar storm that even back then when we just started using the Telegraph for a first attempt at long-distance communication the actual paper that was used in the Telegraph was set on fire.
This was an extremely powerful event that if it happened today would most likely have a huge impact on most of the modern technology. It would very likely wipe almost all of the data and destroy a lot of, if not all of, the devices that we have on the planet. They are not EMP protected or are not protected from the electromagnetic pulse. Some of the military technology might survive but most of the civilian technology will probably be completely annihilated within only a few hours.
The Scary Part: CME Events Are Pretty Common
Here is the scary part. There have been a lot of recent studies that decided to focus on trying to estimate how often such events occur. Even though the Carrington event happened about 150 years ago these events could have been a lot more common than we thought. For the past few months, I’ve been collecting a few papers on the subject to see what scientists have discovered in the last year or so.
What exactly are these events and how do they even form? All of this starts on the surface of our Sun. Magnetic lines form on the Sun’s surface and these lines actually have a tendency to then snap. In other words, once in a while, these magnetic loops have a tendency to reconnect and this magnetic reconnection can then lead to a release of a tremendous amount of so-called coronal mass.
Very Powerful CME Barely Missed Earth In 2012
These CME events, or coronal mass ejection events, are pretty common. The Sun is essentially a sphere where they can go in any direction around the solar system. But once in a while, if we’re really unlucky, they will point at just the right direction at where Earth is going to be. In other words, when this CME is headed toward Earth it can, unfortunately, intersect with our planet and then cause a lot of disturbance on the surface.
Interestingly, a few years ago in 2012, a very powerful CME occurred that was headed right at our planet but missed us by just a little bit. The so-called solar storm of 2012 could have been the next Carrington event had it crossed our planet but we got really lucky and it didn’t. It just missed us. Since then scientists have been very active at trying to establish how often these events occur and are trying to come up with some sort of a way of avoiding certain damage that will occur when they do come here. The problem today is that most of our technology is completely unprepared for this and because of our reliance on technology and the lack of these very powerful events we have so far been pretty lucky.
Another very powerful event occurred back in 1989 in my home province of Quebec in Canada. I was too young to remember what exactly happened but according to my parents, it was a pretty serious event with essentially most of the province being completely in the dark because of the geomagnetic storm. It completely wiped the electric grid of the whole province. This event was so powerful that a very large Aurora was visible very far south, even in places like Florida. This very powerful event also had a lot of effect on various satellites. It also affected some of the computers that were already used back then.
CME Event Could Look Like Start Of World War 3
More terrifyingly, this event also caused a very large blackout of communications across the planet. This is actually one of the scariest parts of these geomagnetic storms. A typical CME would ionize our atmosphere so much that you would not be able to have any kind of electromagnetic communication anywhere. The radio communication would cease to operate. It could also lead to the failure of various cooling mechanisms inside nuclear reactors.
This is actually one of the scarier parts. Imagine, you have no communication and all you nuclear technology is failing and satellites are either failing or are completely unresponsive. Well in some sense, this really looks like someone is about to start World War 3. I’m pretty sure that countries like China that are not even used to seeing this would panic completely. With a complete lack of communication and understanding of what’s happening a country might accidentally push that red button and start another world war.
Telecommunications Could Be Wiped Out
The effects of a typical CME don’t even end there. A typical CME would also affect our ozone layer, decreasing it quite dramatically. It would also significantly increase various types of radiation in the upper atmosphere, turning flying or being in space into a very dangerous endeavor. If you are in an airplane, if it doesn’t crash obviously, you might experience a tremendous amount of radiation that you would not experience otherwise.
In the last decade, so much of the technology is essentially interdependent with telecommunication and with space technology. There are a lot more satellites today and a lot more rocket launches happening every year. All of this is in a sense a bubble that’s forming that could be completely wiped overnight by a CME which nobody is prepared for. The computers that we use, smartphones, and very likely all of our bank accounts would most likely not operate for at least a few days, possibly weeks, and possibly be completely wiped entirely.
It’s Going To Happen A Lot Sooner Than You Think
My hope lies in the idea that one day we will realize that it’s going to happen and start making things a little bit more EMP proof. It’s going to happen and possibly a lot sooner than you think. Some of the recent studies including one of the most comprehensive ones in the last few months decided to investigate the frequency of potential CMI’s and find out the average frequency for an extremely powerful storm.
They found a perfect opportunity to study these at the Royal Observatory in Greenwich in England that’s been active for a very very long time with data of up to 150 years. Scientists also looked at another famous and active observatory in Melbourne, Australia that has a similar amount of data available. The most important thing about these two observatories is their location is actually antipodal. What this means is that they are almost exactly on the opposite sides of the earth.
Scientists Expect A “Great Event” To Happen Every 25 Years
By being on two opposite sides, it allows us to study the magnetic effects in a lot more detail and essentially create a very interesting and very accurate magnetic index of our planet. They refer to this as the aa index. By using this index, the scientists behind the paper identified several events in the last 150 years when the magnetic emissions coming from our Sun were a lot higher than they were otherwise. In other words, other potential Carrington like events.
Unfortunately, what they discovered is that we can expect a great event to happen at least once every 25 years. However, a Carrington like event would only happen every 150 years or so. Such a great event would be only a little bit weaker than a typical Carrington like event suggesting that we might still have a few years in reserve before such an event occurs. But here’s the thing, even a great event would be enough to destroy and severely disrupt modern communication.
A Great Event Should Occur In The Next 10 To 15 Years
In the last few years, we’ve been really ignoring the fact that our Sun can be occasionally extremely active. As a matter of fact, in the last decade or so, our Sun basically spoiled us. The magnetic emissions and various solar emissions were so low that we almost forgot that it can even happen. Judging by their predictions, a great event should definitely occur in the next 10 to 15 years which is kind of troubling. Other similar studies confirm the results as well.
There was another study from Japan that discovered a similar finding including identifying several events that we ignored simply because the technology just didn’t exist yet. There were several major events back in 1921 and in 1872 all which were comparable to a Carrington event as well. Interestingly, some of the scientists even started discovering these reports of solar storms from various archaeological evidence and by looking at the written records by advanced civilizations that lived in the past.
Modern Technology Can Be Wiped Out By An EMP
For example, the Assyrian civilization kept a very detailed analysis of everything including the night skies and they’ve had several observations of these very powerful electromagnetic storms that resulted in the Aurora which could only be explained as another CME event. In other words, human civilization has always experienced these events but back then it wasn’t really a big deal. Now it’s a much bigger deal.
A lot of our modern civilization depends on the technology that can be completely wiped by a typical electromagnetic pulse. This is something that we definitely need to take seriously. More studies of our Sun are needed and we need to start thinking about how to protect our technology from a potential coronal mass ejection that could come our way and disrupt our life once and for all.
Need To Prepare – EMP Event Could Happen Anytime
Now today, we have several studies that do focus on trying to analyze the Sun and predict some of these emissions but we’re still not there yet. We need to have more satellites observing the Sun and more studies trying to understand how these CME’s work. Luckily, the Parker Solar Probe that’s slowly coming closer and closer to the Sun is going to provide a tremendous amount of data that will help us with this.
But remember, these events happen really quickly. By the time that it occurs, it’s going to give us almost no time to prepare and to protect our technology. We need to be ready in advance. This, of course, includes creating technology that is ready for these events. It also includes trying to create satellites that will not fail if a CME occurs. Most importantly, modern banks need to have a lot of backup systems in order for all of us not to suddenly become bankrupt overnight.
It’s also very important to just be aware that these events happen if suddenly you find yourself in a complete blackout and not being able to communicate with anyone. CME’s and events like the Carrington event do happen a lot more frequently than we initially thought. Most of the scientists agree that these events will definitely occur in our lifetime, possibly 10 years, maybe 15, but they could happen even sooner.