The sun is an awesome source of power for the entire solar system. As it creates power and light for all creatures on Earth, it is also a source of incomprehensible heat and danger.
Case in point: According to NASA a massive solar flare erupted on the sun on Tuesday evening, and the results could affect everyone on Earth. The solar flare is one of the largest in almost six years, In addition to these solar flares, two coronal mass ejections (CMEs) were also created, and are currently traveling towards Earth.
What does this mean for us? Let’s take a look at the breakdown of a solar flare:
- A solar flare is a giant release of energy from the sun.
- The sun typically undergoes an 11-year cycle of minimal activity before a solar flare occurs.
- After a solar flare electrons, ions, and atoms are ejected and typically reach Earth within a couple days.
- Because of the expulsion of energy, this can affect weather patterns, electrical grids, and global positioning devices.
This particular solar flare, because of its size, is expected to affect many power grids across the world. In addition, this flare also ejected solar particles into the Earth’s atmosphere, causing a solar radiation storm. These storms can cause high frequency radio communication interference.
The affects of this solar flare are anticipated late Wednesday night. Experts anticipate possible power outages, changes in weather, and changes in flights. In fact, some polar flights have already taken measures to re-route. You can see this amazing solar flare in action by watching this video, with footage captured by the Solar Dynamics Observatory.