Go Back  PPRuNe Forums > Ground & Other Ops Forums > Questions
Reload this Page >

Solar storms and Polar flight ops

Questions If you are a professional pilot or your work involves professional aviation please use this forum for questions. Enthusiasts, please use the 'Spectators Balcony' forum.

Solar storms and Polar flight ops

Old 18th May 2024, 16:20
  #1 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Hawaii Island
Posts: 146
Received 237 Likes on 132 Posts
Solar storms and Polar flight ops

All,

I'm not a pilot and hope you forgive me for posting here, but of all places, there was an interesting discussion in Jet Blast (G4 Solar Geomagnetic Storm) about flight ops during a predicted solar storm. My question there was:

"These are questions for commercial pilots who fly polar routes. Do you change your routes if a solar storm is predicted? If so, why? Is it concen about damage to the aircraft or damage to ground or space-based navigational infrastructure? I'm well aware that satellites are often maneuvered or temporarily shut down when a major solar storm is forecast, but I've not heard that airlines do the same thing. If this belongs in another forum, please let me know. I think it's an interesting topic."

My background is in physics and astronomy, so I understand the potential threats of coronal mass ejections (CMEs). When a CME is detected, at-risk satellites are re-orientated or temporarily shut down to protect the electronics. Do airlines adjust polar routes when a storm is predicted or do you just carry on as normal?

I'm not asking as a journalist or anything like that; you can see what I post in Jet Blast if you need verification and if you PM me it will remain confidential. My interest in this is as a scientist, nothing more.
Hokulea is offline  
Old 19th May 2024, 12:29
  #2 (permalink)  

PPRuNe Handmaiden
 
Join Date: Feb 1997
Location: Duit On Mon Dei
Posts: 4,679
Received 64 Likes on 32 Posts
Our company did change flight levels and routings where possible. Also advised crews what to expect and suggested some mitigations. Eg instead of GPS, use IRS in the affected regions (we're getting good at that with all the GPS jamming/spoofing going on).
redsnail is offline  
Old 20th May 2024, 06:12
  #3 (permalink)  
Thread Starter
 
Join Date: Apr 2007
Location: Hawaii Island
Posts: 146
Received 237 Likes on 132 Posts
Thank you! I appreciate that you answered two questions I had in one go. The GPS satellites' risk was reasonably obvious. Still, I also wondered if airlines considered the potential increased radiation at altitude, especially in the polar regions, and it seems they did (or at least your company did). This was an unusual event, probably the most powerful solar storm the Earth has experienced in decades, so thank you again.
Hokulea is offline  
The following users liked this post:

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Thread Tools
Search this Thread

Contact Us - Archive - Advertising - Cookie Policy - Privacy Statement - Terms of Service

Copyright © 2024 MH Sub I, LLC dba Internet Brands. All rights reserved. Use of this site indicates your consent to the Terms of Use.