Solar Storms - The Threat to Planet Earth

Horizon, 2011-2012 Episode 9 of 15

Duration: 59 minutes

There is a new kind of weather to worry about, and it comes from our nearest star.

Scientists are expecting a fit of violent activity on the sun which will propel billions of tonnes of superheated gas and pulses of energy towards our planet. They have the power to close down our modern technological civilisation - e.g. in 1989, a solar storm cut off the power to the Canadian city of Quebec.

Horizon meets the space weathermen who are trying to predict what is coming our way, and organistions like the National Grid, who are preparing for the impending solar storms.

  • Prof Cary Forest - University of Wisconsin, Madison Physics Department

    Prof Cary Forest - University of Wisconsin, Madison Physics Department

    Prof Cary Forest visits a scrap metal yard, where vast electromagnets move metal around with the same forces that generate space weather.

    Scrap Metal Processor - Milwaukee, Wisconsin
  • Prof Paul Bellan - Applied Physics at Caltech

    Prof Paul Bellan - Applied Physics at Caltech

    Prof Paul Bellan demonstrates that space weather is a lot like blowing bubbles – albeit with the force of billions of atomic bombs.

    Applied Physics at Caltech

Credits

Director
Ben Fox
Producer
Ben Fox
Series Editor
Aidan Laverty

Broadcasts

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