March 8, 2012 aurora over Faskrudsfjordur, Iceland courtesy Jonina Oskarsdottir web
Almost 160 years ago, a massive solar flare with the energy of 10 billion atomic bombs resulted in the largest geomagnetic storm on Earth ever recorded. It caused sparks to shower from telegraph machines and set papers nearby ablaze.
The night sky was so bright that birds began chirping and laborers began their daily chores. This was the first collision between solar activity and human technology – but not the last. It will happen again (and almost did just seven years ago).
On Friday, August 2 at 9:00 am, Museum Education Director Dave Dooling will lead the discussion for the free August Launch Pad Lecture on what’s up with the Sun (or down, as it is for now), and how solar storms can damage modern power and communications systems.
The Launch Pad Lecture is free to the public and is held at 9 a.m. on the Museum’s first floor on the first Friday of each month. Coffee and donuts are compliments of the International Space Hall of Fame Foundation.
The next Launch Pad Lecture will be on September 6, 2019, and the topic will be The Cape: History of Cape Canaveral with Museum Education Director Dave Dooling.
The Launch Pad Lectures are streamed live on Periscope and are also available after the lecture on the museum’s YouTube channel.
The New Mexico Museum of Space History, a Smithsonian Affiliate, is a division of the NM Department of Cultural Affairs. For more information, call 575-437-2840 or toll free 1-877-333-6589 or visit the website or ‘like’ their Facebook page.