Feeds

Solar flares ate my GPS

Worse to come in 2011?

Top three mobile application threats

Did you get lost while out driving in December? If you did, blame the solar flare that zapped signals sent out by the GPS satellite network to keep travellers travelling in the right direction.

According to researchers at New York's Cornell University, two major solar flares observed on 5 and 6 December emitted blasts of radio noise that were ten times more intense than than the worst burst then on record, Reuters reports.

The New Jersey Institute of Technology measured the radio activity and found the flares generated 20,000 times more noise than that emitted by the rest of the sun's surface.

When the radio waves reached the Earth they disrupted connections between GPS satellites and receivers.

Details of the GPS-busting event were revealed at the Space Weather Enterprise Forum conference currently being held in Washington.

The concern is the timing of the event. December's radio blasts took place during one of the sun's regular, 11-year quiet times. Equally, the sun experiences peaks of solar flare and sunspot activity during the so-called 'solar maxima', which likewise occur every 11 years.

The next minimum is due mid-2007, after which solar activity will rise before reaching the next maximum in 2011.

Combat fraud and increase customer satisfaction

More from The Register

next story
Samsung Galaxy S5 fingerprint scanner hacked in just 4 DAYS
Sammy's newbie cooked slower than iPhone, also costs more to build
Microsoft lobs pre-release Windows Phone 8.1 at devs who dare
App makers can load it before anyone else, but if they do they're stuck with it
Leaked pics show EMBIGGENED iPhone 6 screen
Fat-fingered fanbois rejoice over Chinternet snaps
Feast your PUNY eyes on highest resolution phone display EVER
Too much pixel dust for your strained eyeballs to handle
Report: Apple seeking to raise iPhone 6 price by a HUNDRED BUCKS
'Well, that 5c experiment didn't go so well – let's try the other direction'
US mobile firms cave on kill switch, agree to install anti-theft code
Slow and kludgy rollout will protect corporate profits
Rounded corners? Pah! Amazon's '3D phone has eye-tracking tech'
Now THAT'S what we call a proper new feature
Oh no, Joe: WinPhone users already griping over 8.1 mega-update
Hang on. Which bit of Developer Preview don't you understand?
Zucker punched: Google gobbles Facebook-wooed Titan Aerospace
Up, up and away in my beautiful balloon flying broadband-bot
Sony battery recall as VAIO goes out with a bang, not a whimper
The perils of having Panasonic as a partner
prev story

Whitepapers

Designing a defence for mobile apps
In this whitepaper learn the various considerations for defending mobile applications; from the mobile application architecture itself to the myriad testing technologies needed to properly assess mobile applications risk.
3 Big data security analytics techniques
Applying these Big Data security analytics techniques can help you make your business safer by detecting attacks early, before significant damage is done.
Five 3D headsets to be won!
We were so impressed by the Durovis Dive headset we’ve asked the company to give some away to Reg readers.
The benefits of software based PBX
Why you should break free from your proprietary PBX and how to leverage your existing server hardware.
Securing web applications made simple and scalable
In this whitepaper learn how automated security testing can provide a simple and scalable way to protect your web applications.