Strongest radiation storm since 2017 caused by solar flare blast.

By Oliver Townsend Jun 10, 2024
Solar flare blasts out strongest radiation storm since 2017.jpegOrginal image from: https://www.space.com/solar-storm-june-strongest-radiation-since-2017

Solar flares are powerful bursts of electromagnetic radiation that originate from sunspots on the sun’s surface. These events are classified into different categories based on their size and strength, with X-class flares being the most powerful. Recently, sunspot region AR3697, formerly known as AR3664, has been making headlines due to its intense solar flares.

Strongest Radiation Storm Since 2017

On June 8, sunspot region AR3697 unleashed a M9.7-class solar flare, the second strongest type on the classification scale. This flare resulted in the most powerful radiation storm since 2017, according to NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center. These radiation storms can have implications for space launch operations, satellites, and even disrupt shortwave radio signals.

Impact on Earth

Following the solar flare, energetic protons began their journey towards Earth. Upon arrival, these particles interacted with Earth’s magnetic field, leading to a radio blackout in the northern polar region. This event, known as a polar cap absorption (PCA) event, can affect shortwave radio transmissions.

Geomagnetic Storm Watch

Additionally, a coronal mass ejection (CME) triggered by the solar flare could approach Earth’s outer atmosphere, potentially causing a geomagnetic storm. While not expected to be as intense as the previous solar storm in May, NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center has issued a Geomagnetic Storm Watch at the G2 level, indicating a possibility of auroras visible over some northern and upper Midwest states.

Strategies for Monitoring

Monitoring solar activity and space weather events is crucial for understanding the potential impacts on Earth. By staying informed about solar flares, radiation storms, and geomagnetic disturbances, scientists and researchers can prepare for any disruptions that may occur. The ability to predict and track these events allows for proactive measures to mitigate any adverse effects.

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