"Solar Storm Speeds Toward Earth, May Disrupt Power, Satellites"

"The largest solar storm in five years was due to arrive on Earth early Thursday, promising to shake the globe’s magnetic field while expanding the Northern Lights."

"The storm started with a massive solar flare earlier in the week and grew as it raced outward from the sun, expanding like a giant soap bubble, scientists said. When it strikes, the particles will be moving at 4 million mph.

'It’s hitting us right in the nose,' said Joe Kunches, a scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Boulder, Colo.

The massive cloud of charged particles could disrupt utility grids, airline flights, satellite networks and GPS services, especially in northern areas. But the same blast could also paint colorful auroras farther from the poles than normal."

Seth Borenstein reports for the Associated Press March 7, 2012.

SEE ALSO:

"Strong Solar Storm Heading For Earth " (Reuters)

Thursday, March 8, 2012