Way back before we had the Internet and telephones and electrical wiring, scientists learned how solar flares can play havoc with manmade technologies. They also connected solar flares to the fantastic displays of auroral light, usually seen only at far northern and southern latitudes. And this discovery was completely by accident.
Oceanic and Atmospheric Research (OAR) - or "NOAA Research" - provides the research foundation for understanding the complex systems that support our planet. Working in partnership with other organizational units of the NOAA, a bureau of the Department of Commerce, NOAA Research enables better forecasts, earlier warnings for natural disasters, and a greater understanding of the Earth. Our role is to provide unbiased science to better manage the environment, nationally, and globally.