Okay don’t panic however much the headline could be freighting, apparently there has been a giant magnetic explosion on the sun. A solar flare, which is now classified as “extreme”, is now heading towards planet earth and could reportedly hit as early as Thursday next week.
What’s a Solar Flare?
A solar flare is a sudden flash of brightness observed over the Sun‘s surface or the solar limb, which is interpreted as a large energy release of up to 6 × 1025 joules of energy. They are often, but not always, followed by a colossal coronal mass ejection,The resulting flares send clouds of charged particles racing through space, according to Wikipedia.
Apparently, after studying it’s trajectory, the worst of the flare is set to pass above the Earth, so even if it does cause minor disturbances in our power grids, satellites and radio transmissions offline, it will only be temporary, says Tom Berger, the director of the Space Weather Prediction Center in Boulder, Colorado, in an interview with the Associated Press.
For the curious, you will be able to see the flare in action live on the internet as the Slooh Space Telescope will be transmitting video of the sun from Prescott, Arizona, beginning on Thursday afternoon at 1:00 p.m. EDT, reports Business Insider.
Solar storms can be extremely dangerous as they cause stupefying auroras. There is a high possibility of them leaving us in a total communication black out since they can knock out most electrical grids and satellites or GPS, potentially for years.
Source: Business Insider