SPACE STORM 

Solar flare expected to hit Earth within days sparking power grid disruption after ‘canyon of fire’ burst from the Sun

SOURCE: The Sun

A SOLAR flare is expected to hit Earth within days and could spark magnetic storms and power grid disruptions. The potential for a solar storm comes after a recent eruption on the surface of the Sun that caused a “canyon of fire” to burst across the surface.

W4JLP asks that all monitor Amateur Radio Bands, make note of any disturbance, and report to ARRL / NOAA any noticeable issue or disturbance.

The eruption that occurred on Friday is expected to send a storm of solar flares heading toward Earth. Scientists are predicting the solar flare could reach Earth’s magnetosphere around July 20, according to the experts at SpaceWeather.com. If a solar flare reaches Earth, it could trigger minor, but disruptive geomagnetic storms. A dark filament of magnetism whipped out of the sun’s atmosphere on July 16, Space Weather reported.

NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the solar eruption. The canyon which appeared in the sun was 155,000 miles long, and 15,500 miles deep, according to Space Weather. An arc of plasma filament of can be seen suspended above the surface of the canyon before it is flung out into space.

The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) observed a type of solar storm called a Coronal Mass Ejection, or CME, emerging from the sun’s northern hemisphere after the solar eruption. The difference between CMEs and solar flares is that CMEs travel slower than solar flares that could reach Earth in about eight minutes. The fastest CME would take 15 to 18 hours to hit Earth.

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) are currently modeling the CME to determine if it will hit Earth. Although the CME seems less threatening, there is a chance of solar flares from an occurrence that has happened today.

There are approximately six large sunspots on the sun. “At least two of them pose a threat for strong flares,” according to Space Weather. NASA explains this phenomenon: “The magnetic field lines near sunspots often tangle, cross, and reorganize. This can cause a sudden explosion of energy called a solar flare.”

NOAA forecasters estimate a 45 percent chance of M-class, medium-sized, flares and a 10 percent chance of X-class, large-sized, flares. If these flares are created, they are expected to erupt on Sunday.

X-class flares are more frightening because they can cause radio blackouts across Earth and long-lasting radiation storms.

M-class flares only cause short blackouts in the Earth’s North and South poles.

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1 comment

  1. I am posting this based on our discussion on the Sunday night net. NOAA Space weather Prediction Center has forecasted the following:

    A chance for R1-2 (Minor-Moderate), with a slight chance for R3 (Strong), radio blackouts will persist through 20 July, given the current active regions on the solar disk.

    Below are NOAA’s definitions for R1-3. These events happen multiple times a year. The scale goes up through R-5. We don’t want an R4 or R5 event to hit the earth. If you want to read about what an R5 storm would do, you should check out the Carrington Event at https://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Carrington_Event

    R-3
    HF Radio: Wide area blackout of HF radio communication, loss of radio contact for about an hour on the sunlit side of Earth.
    Navigation: Low-frequency navigation signals degraded for about an hour.

    R-2
    HF Radio: Limited blackout of HF radio communication on the sunlit side, loss of radio contact for tens of minutes.
    Navigation: Degradation of low-frequency navigation signals for tens of minutes.

    R-1
    HF Radio: Weak or minor degradation of HF radio communication on the sunlit side, occasional loss of radio contact.
    Navigation: Low-frequency navigation signals degraded for brief intervals.

    If you want to do your own research check out the following:

    NOAA Space weather This site will give you an update on the current space weather
    https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/products/3-day-forecast

    This site explains the different R levels:
    https://www.swpc.noaa.gov/noaa-scales-explanation

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