Solar Storm Impact on Critical Infrastructure (SoSCI)
Tsunamis, hurricanes, flooding, earthquakes can lead to hundreds of fatalities and billions of economic losses. In the last decades, critical infrastructures were developed in the way to ensure their stability against natural hazards. Long, divaricated, interconnected power, telecommunication and distribution systems were constructed. Ironically, such diversification increases systems vulnerability against the solar storms. The general awareness of space weather impact on critical infrastructure depends on industry sector. In terms of power systems, Hydro-Quebec blackout in 1989 was the event which “switched” the solar storms research from curiosity to necessity. Despite of permanent research, the widespread outages and economic losses could not be prevented in 2003 as a result of relatively strong Halloween blackout. Early growing worldwide tendency to move large quantities of electricity deteriorates the fail-safety even further. The current study addresses the impacts of solar storms on critical infrastructures addressing the potential threats and impacts of geo-magnetically induced currents on power systems, telecommunication systems etc. as well as potential mitigation actions.