As society’s dependence on technology increases, so does its vulnerability to space weather.
The driver of space weather is magnetic activity on the Sun, which changes the state of the environment in near-Earth space, including solar winds and storms. Solar storms have the potential to significantly disrupt GPS satellite signals, electrical power grids, space-exploration assets, airline and defense communications, and other systems society relies on.
With today's limited ability to predict the impact of space weather events, the societal risks are significant. But in U.S. universities and research centers, within industry, and at national agencies, specialists in a number of fields are accelerating scientific understanding of space weather and expanding the nation's prediction capabilities for hazardous events.
— June 2016