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Earth’s radioactive material could reveal secrets of solar storms

January 05, 2013

Earth’s radioactive material could reveal secrets of solar storms

New research shows that strange solar interactions with radioactive particles on Earth could be used as an early warning system.

Researchers may have discovered a new method to predict solar flares more than a day before they occur, providing advance warning to help protect satellites, power grids, and astronauts from potentially dangerous radiation.

The system, which is the first of its kind, depends on radioactive decay rates on Earth. The change in radioactive elements was first noticed in 2006 when Stanford scientists sought to understand why certain elements were changing their decay rates.

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