Solar Outage to Disrupt TV, Radio Signals

Inside a radio station studio. [Courtesy]

Your Television, Radio and Satellite powered Internet signals will from today experience intermittent disruptions due to the positioning of the sun. Each year during the Equinox, the sun aligns with communication signals and causes a Solar Outage by overpowering their signals.

The equinox refers to the time when the sun crosses the plane of the earth’s equator. As a result, night and day are of approximately equal length all over the earth. Equinox occurs every year around March 21 and September 22.

The outages are expected to last about 4 days, with intermittent disruptions lasting between three to seven minutes.

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Some media houses have already alerted their consumers.

According to the Standard Group‘s technical department, the disruptions on Monday and Tuesday will last about eight minutes from 9.37am.

You are most likely to experience pixelated or frozen pictures and audio distortions lasting roughly seven minutes starting 9.37 am on Wednesday.

Thursday will have the shortest interruptions at three minutes and 37 seconds.

TV and Radio broadcasts happen via satellite. The signal from your device is transmitted to a “gateway station” which is usually a large antenna.

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The antenna transmits the signal to a satellite, relaying a signal over a large area which then powers into your TV or radio.

Media companies use geostationary satellites, meaning they are fixed on one point.

The sun produces microwave frequency, similar to what the satellites use to transmit their signals. During the equinox, the sun moves along the equator passing behind the stationary satellites causing the disruptions.

TV, Radio and users who have their internet transmitted via satellite are all affected by the disruptions.

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Written by Vanessa Murrey

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