20 Feb '11, 12am

Space weather could wreak havoc in gadget-driven world: WASHINGTON - ADVANCES in modern life have exposed humans...

WASHINGTON - ADVANCES in modern life have exposed humans to new weaknesses to space weather, which could disrupt communications, crash stock markets and cause months-long power outages, experts warned on Saturday. Worst-case scenarios including scorched commercial satellites, GPS failures and inoperable computers and mobile phones were discussed by an expert panel at the American Association for the Advancement of Science's meeting. And with the solar cycle heading toward a new period of intense activity in the coming 11 years, the likelihood of a major geomagnetic storm will only grow. 'This is not a matter of if, it is simply a matter of when and how big,' said National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration administrator Jane Lubchenco. The experts admitted that currently, little that can be done to predict such a storm, much less shield the world's electrical grid by d...

Full article: http://www.straitstimes.com/BreakingNews/TechandScience/S...

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