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Solar Storm Knocks Out GPS During Planting

While a solar storm brought the aurora borealis to a large part of the U.S., it also played havoc with farmers in the middle of spring planting.

404 Media says the storm broke critical GPS and precision farming abilities in tractors and agricultural equipment at a time when they’re especially important. These outages forced many farmers to momentarily bring their planting to a stop. One chain of John Deere dealerships gave farmers a heads-up that some of the systems in their tractors were “extremely compromised.” They said farmers planting crops while the precision equipment was compromised may face problems when they go to harvest. N

ebraska farmer Kevin Kennedy told 404 Media that all of his tractors were sitting at the ends of each field and shut down because of the solar storm. Dennis Wolf of South Dakota said his equipment showed the tractor going in circles and the auto steer didn’t work.

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