Disclosure: Solar flares in 1967 almost started World War III

Watts Up With That?

1967 solar storm nearly took US to brink of war

A view of the sun on May 23, 1967, in a narrow visible wavelength of light called Hydrogen-alpha. The bright region in the top center region of brightness shows the area where the large flare occurred. CREDIT National Solar Observatory historical archive. A view of the sun on May 23, 1967, in a narrow visible wavelength of light called Hydrogen-alpha. The bright region in the top center region of brightness shows the area where the large flare occurred. CREDIT National Solar observatory historical archive.

From AGU WASHINGTON, DC — A solar storm that jammed radar and radio communications at the height of the Cold War could have led to a disastrous military conflict if not for the U.S. Air Force’s budding efforts to monitor the sun’s activity, a new study finds.

On May 23, 1967, the Air Force prepared aircraft for war, thinking the nation’s surveillance radars in polar regions were being jammed by the Soviet Union. Just in time, military space weather forecasters conveyed information about the solar storm’s potential to disrupt radar and radio communications. The planes remained on the ground and…

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