A powerful solar flare struck Earth on Tuesday, sending a burst of X-rays and ultraviolet rays at the speed of light at our planet.
The phenomenon was caused by a powerful class 10 eruption, which caused black radioelectric blackout for about one hour a day on the side of the earth in parts of South Asia, Australia and New Zealand.
The reason is that extreme solar radiation ionized parts of the planet’s upper atmosphere when high-frequency radio waves traveled there. The eruption occurred at 10:33 pm on Tuesday.
This eruption follows a series of powerful events on the Sun, including two giant coronal holes and a series of eruptions that caused the aurora borealis to appear in the sky as far south as Arizona. This may be a precursor to increased solar activity in the coming days.
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The sun has already produced three moderate M-class flares — one level below X-class — in the past day, according to a report from the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Weather Forecast Center released Thursday.
That report warned of the possibility of more M-class eruptions in the coming days, with a “slight chance” that another X-class eruption would also occur on Thursday.
The UK Met Office has warned that there is also a possibility of more moderate eruptions over the next two days, due to the presence of a large and active group of sunspots. Sunspots are small dark regions where the surface temperature is lower than the surrounding plasma.
More solar activity can disrupt technology, but also produce more auroras in the sky.
NASA/SDO/AIA/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center
Tuesday’s eruption marks the seventh class 10 solar flare so far this year. This suggests that solar activity in 2023 will far surpass that of 2022, a year in which there were seven X-class solar flares in total, according to SpaceWeather.com, a blog that tracks daily government data on the Sun and its impact on Earth’s atmosphere.
Although Tuesday’s eruption was the strongest, it was at the extreme end of class X eruptions, classified as X1.2, but the Sun is capable of producing flares up to X28, which can devastate Earth’s technology. .
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In addition to radiation blackouts, solar flares and other flares can cause power outages, knock satellites out of orbit, and confuse GPS.
ten than not, solar activity triggers the most intense displays of the Northern Lights, sometimes pushing them farther south than usual in the Arctic.
Arctic-Images / Getty Images
More flares and solar flares are expected and will increase in frequency when the Sun reaches the peak of its 11-year cycle in 2025.