It’s interesting that the ‘GridEx’ electrical grid drill and that ‘brighter than a full moon’ comet are taking place around the same time frame.
“Comet of the century” may be brighter than the moon
Astronomers are now bracing for what may be the “comet of the century.”
The magnificent space formation is called the International Scientific Optical Network (ISON), and scientists say it will be historic because everyone will be able to see it. According toNASA, the comet will make its closet advance on the Sun on Nov. 28th, and will briefly be much brighter than a full moon. As of now the comet is making its decent towards the Sun at 47,000 miles per hour.
Currently, the only way to see this comet is through the Hubble telescope, and at this view it is 386 million miles from the Sun.
Behind the comet itself, which is a frozen nucleus, the telescope was able to catch the burnt off dust particles flying through the air. That trail of dust is caused by the warming of the comet by the Sun and flows in the direction opposite the massive heat source. From the Hubble photos researchers believe that the actual size of the comet is about three to four miles across.
The comet was discovered in September 2012 by the Russian-led International Scientific Optical Network using a 16-inch telescope.
The objectives of the NERC Grid Security Exercise (GridEx) series are to exercise the current readiness of participating Electricity Sub-sector entities to respond to a cyber incident and provide input for security program improvements to the bulk power system. GridEx is a biennial international grid security exercise that uses best practices and other contributions from the Department of Homeland Security, the Federal Emergency Management Agency, and the National Institute of Standards and Technology.
NERC conducted the first sector-wide grid security exercise, GridEx 2011, on November 16-17, 2011. The exercise was designed to validate the readiness of the Electricity Sub-sector to respond to a cyber incident, strengthen utilities’ crisis response functions, and provide input for internal security program improvements. The GridEx 2011 after-action report is below.
On November 13-14, 2013, GridEx II will exercise NERC and industry crisis response plans and identify actionable improvement recommendations for plans, security programs, and skills. The scenario will build on lessons learned from GridEx 2011 and include both cybersecurity and physical security components.
For more information and registration for GridEx II, click here.