Today we depend on electricity for everything, so perhaps we would have to wonder if we would be able to lead a normal life if a solar storm hit the Earth. It would be complicated, right? Although fortunately there is no indication that something like this will happen in the next few years, the president of the United States, Barack Obama, has started to take precautionary measures.
But why? What would happen to the Earth if a solar storm hit it?
Our planet is "protected" with many invisible lines that go from the center of it to the limit where the solar wind is. These lines are called terrestrial magnetic field or geomagnetic field. This changes over time as a result of the movement of molten iron alloys found in the outer core of the planet. In doing so, the north pole is moving, although so slowly that it does not force us to have to readjust our compasses frequently. In fact, for both poles to reverse, hundreds of thousands of years have to pass.
What about the Sun? Our star king provides us with light and warmth, as well as a spectacle of unequaled beauty: the Northern Lights. But from time to time there are solar storms, meaning that an explosion occurs in the sun's atmosphere, emanating energetic particles that penetrate the magnetic field. This is a phenomenon that cannot be avoided, but it can be predicted to mitigate possible damage.
In the event that such an event occurs, All global position systems (GPS), Internet, telephony, and any other electronic system would be affected. In short, we would have many problems to continue leading the life we lead, although it would not be the first time. The last was in 1859, that although at that time they did not have Internet or GPS, it was recently (in 1843) that the telegraph networks had been created and they did suffer several cuts.
If it happened today, the damages would be much more important.