Solar Storms,
Solar Flares & Cosmic Rays

18 March 2018

Updated: 21 September 2018


A solar storm is the common name given to a range of event emanating from the Sun. One in particular is a coronal mass ejection, but more on that in a bit.

Here’s a list of resources regarding the different types of solar storms and cosmic rays.

General information is followed by where to get the physics perspective as deep as you’d like to go, some historical details, the impact on one’s health and remedies.

General Information

Sun spots can be seen on the surface of our closes star, but of course take precautions if attempting to observe for yourself.

Similar to a sun spot is a coronal hole.

A coronal mass ejection event is associated with these “tears” in the magnetic field of the sun, where magnetic material from the sun erupts into our solar system. Sometimes it impacts the Earth to varying degrees after a few days of travel, but many of these completely miss us.

Those are conventionally known as a solar storm, yet more are included under that grouping as well.

Not all coronal holes lead to a solar storm.

Some coronal holes are relatively small while others have appeared as a scar spanning nearly the entire length and much of the breadth of the solar disc as it appears from our vantage point.

There is also solar wind, as a separate phenomenon. This is essentially where the sun’s magnetic field extends and perturbs the space between the sun and planets.

Somewhat related but distinctly different– there are cosmic rays (or cosmic radiation) which is radiation emanating from other than the Sun or our planet itself.

When clustered and hitting our planet in a surge, this is considered to be its own kind of storm, sometimes called a cosmic storm.

Finally– affectionately known as killer electrons– Electromagnetic Ion Cyclotron waves wreak havoc with sensitive electronics and therefore human bodies which are also sensitive to electromagnetic disturbances.

In 2018 as many times before, we have been barraged by all these phenomena.

Does space weather affect us?

Yes, on many levels with potential impact to:

Keep reading to educate yourself and for possible remedies.

Physics Perspective

Dr. Tamitha Skov is one of the leading space weather experts in the world.

Her website is Space Weather Woman .com, a nickname given by her colleagues.

She is TamithaSkov on twitter offering daily forecasts.

See WeatherBrains #627 with interview of Dr. Tamitha Skov (approximately 1.5 hours).

Highlights from that interview:

Referenced within that interview:


Studies of Electromagnetic Ion Cyclotron waves (“killer electrons”) expanded in September 2018 with launch of ELFIN satellite.


Impact On Our Health

Perhaps a little woo for some tastes but good overview of health impact: How Solar Flares & Geomagnetic Storms Affect Us​

Other links:


This is for purposes of information only and is not medical advice.

Individuals with personal or family history of health concerns should
first discuss this with a medical doctor before attempting.

One approach to consider for mitigating effects of solar storms, cosmic radiation and disturbances to Earth’s magnetic field: Earthing (no affiliation beyond having confirmed the physics of their claims by using a multimeter; see below).

These are some variations tried on a regular basis (e.g., weekly or monthly) with positive results:

Obviously, avoid this type of activity if there’s any chance of an electrical storm.

The idea is that your body becomes electrically grounded, thereby dissipating static electricity from excessive positive charge.

Once zero current is attained, the flow of electron charges reverses, and your body then draws negative charge.

You can easily measure this with an inexpensive digital multimeter at the 200 milliamp (mA) setting.

(Don’t get caught-up on the common associations of “positive” or “negative” charges. Linguistics doesn’t always match physics, and this is such an instance.)

Further Reading

Copyright © 2018 Daniel Joseph Pezely
May be licensed via Creative Commons Attribution.