March 12, 2012
No harm from solar storm
Close monitoring of our satellites during the recent solar storm confirmed that there haven't been any incidents as a result of the solar activity.
The storm was triggered by a pair of massive solar flares, coupled with a coronal mass ejection last week. This is the second large solar storm so far this year, events such as this increase the chance of particles interacting with satellites.
Our state-of-the-art satellites are built to work in the hazardous Space environment, but getting hit by a particle may have an effect and cause an interruption of the satellite service or, in the worst case, a permanent failure on board.
Solar activity, or space weather, can also affect the performance of systems that we use, for example the GPS system used in GRAS instrument and for positioning on Jason-2, or communications between our ground station and satellite.