Life is now sunnier at Lot Fourteen with the opening of the Bureau of Meteorology Australian Space Weather Forecasting Centre.
Space weather effects life on Earth more than most people realise, impacting everything from communications and GPS to energy supply, aviation and other critical infrastructure.
Dr Kate Brand, Operations Manager at the Bureau’s Australian Space Weather Forecasting Centre, said space weather is principally driven by the Sun.
“The Sun’s turbulent activity is the main source of space weather. Solar events that cause space weather impact include solar flares, coronal mass ejections and particle radiation events. As our reliance on technology grows, so does the risk of disruption to our lives from these events.”
While many Australians utilise Earth-based products from the Bureau every day, the new Centre expands the Bureau’s capability. It will deliver 24/7 space weather forecasting and warning services to help Australia’s space industry to understand, prepare for and respond to space weather events. The Centre will also improve industry’s and governments’ understanding of space weather events and the impacts on Australia’s security and Australians’ lives.
The Australian Space Weather Forecasting Centre adds to a growing ecosystem of over 100 space organisations currently in South Australia, evidence of the state’s strengthening trajectory as a force in the space industry.
“From our forecasting centre in Adelaide, we can predict how events on the Sun might affect us here on Earth, 150 million kilometres away.”
To view the Bureau’s space weather forecasts, warnings and observations, head to www.bom.gov.au