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Modern Mysteries

Did a solar flare cause the Titanic disaster ?

By T.K. Randall
September 17, 2020 · Comment icon 10 comments

Even the slightest course change could have proven disastrous. Image Credit: Willy Stower - 1912
It is now believed that a geomagnetic storm interfered with the Titanic's navigation and communications.
Situated 13,000ft beneath the surface of the Atlantic, the wreck of the Titanic was discovered in 1985 and has since served as a humbling reminder of the disaster that claimed over 1,500 lives.

Many factors have been attributed to the string of events that lead to the iconic vessel's demise, including a lack of binoculars for the crow's nest and the fact that the ship's captain had insisted on speeding through a region known to contain icebergs.

Now however, a new study has highlighted another potential factor that may have tipped things over the edge - a geomagnetic storm produced by a solar flare that may have had an impact on the Titanic's navigational and radio capabilities.

"The Titanic struck an iceberg at 2340 ship time on April 14, 1912 (0310 UTC, April 15) in light winds and a relatively calm sea state," writes independent researcher Mila Zinkova.

"The Titanic's Fourth Officer Joseph Boxhall worked out the ship's SOS position. Boxhall's position was around 13 nautical miles (24 km) off their real position. "
"The rescue ship Carpathia received this wrong position, but somehow miraculously streamed directly to the Titanic's lifeboats. Both the error and correction may have been caused by the effect of space weather."

"It is considered here that a significant space weather event, in this instance a geomagnetic storm, was present during the period around the Titanic's disaster, with some impacts upon navigation and communication."

While it isn't clear just how severe an impact the geomagnetic storm may have had on the ship's navigation, even the slightest change of course could have made all the difference.

"A negligible compass error, which might have resulted from the storm, could have placed the Titanic on the collision course," Zinkova wrote.

"The geomagnetic storm might have been partly responsible for the incorrect calculation of the Titanic's SOS position in both direct and indirect ways by influencing the compass, and by adding to the stress level of the navigators who performed the calculations."

Source: Meaww.com | Comments (10)

Recent comments on this story
Comment icon #1 Posted by Scholar4Truth 2 years ago
Interesting theory, but where is the evidence? unless one can show that anything but an Iceberg caused the sinking of the titanic then its all assertions.
Comment icon #2 Posted by susieice 2 years ago
They still ignored the ice warnings. Could their compasses have been off? Possibly. But you would need evidence of that and none of the surviving ships crew, especially Lightholler, has said anything like that.
Comment icon #3 Posted by TigerBright19 2 years ago
Do†the Northern Lights (aurora borealis) affect a ship's compass?† A Titanic survivor called Major Peuchen testified in America and said - "The Northern lights were very strong that night."† Would that mess about with the ship's compass and throw them off course?† The Titanic was supposed to be steaming west to America but the wreck is pointing North where the icebergs where located.† Was the ship lured towards its doom by mother nature? † †
Comment icon #4 Posted by susieice 2 years ago
I just found a forum that 's discussing this. I don't recall the northern lights being mentioned before but several survivors†said they saw them. It was when they were in the lifeboats, after the sinking. I remember reading everyone saying†the night was dark and full of stars. That's what the books about Titanic say. https://www.encyclopedia-titanica.org/community/threads/when-did-the-northern-lights-appear.36043/
Comment icon #5 Posted by Mr.United_Nations 2 years ago
But why only the Titanic?†
Comment icon #6 Posted by stereologist 2 years ago
This idea sounds fishy to me. The night was clear and one of the stars that would have been visible was Polaris, the north star. That's a pretty vague statement. They might as well have stated that the compass was not properly calibrated. This site gives an account of the arrival. http://www.titanic-titanic.com/carpathia-to-titanics-rescue/ They spot a flare from a life boat. https://titanicfacts.net/carpathia/ At this site it states they traveled 56 miles to get to the site. Here is a discussion of how the location was given incorrectly. https://timmaltin.com/2019/04/08/titanic-distress-signa... [More]
Comment icon #7 Posted by docyabut2 2 years ago
I just don't believe it was from sun flares, but just from†hitting a ice burg ")
Comment icon #8 Posted by kartikg 2 years ago
All other ships would be also off course.†
Comment icon #9 Posted by Jon the frog 2 years ago
Whatever... they didn't have the Iceberg location. So planning a route at that time was going to Europe and not running aground...† Navigating was working on a charts and approximative at a certain degree because of winds and current†until landmarks... a couple degree of deviation was accurate more or less.
Comment icon #10 Posted by DanL 2 years ago
I don't think that anybody has inferred that the Titanic didn't sink as a result of it hitting an iceberg. The question is WHY. A well-seasoned captain and crew in an area known to occasionally have icebergs and the recent sightings and reports should have been enough to make them more careful. What is the most likely theory, with some testimonial evidence, is that the Captain, having a new and powerful ship, wanted to set a new record for a transatlantic crossing. Instead of either slowing down or changing his course to a more southern and safer line he instead forged ahead. There are also so... [More]

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