Coronal mass ejection headed toward Mercury and Venus

Jul 02, 2013 by Karen C. Fox
On July 1, 2013, the sun erupted with a coronal mass ejection, or CME -- shown here as the lighter-colored gas moving off to the left -- which soared off in the direction of Venus and Mars. This image was captured by the joint ESA/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory. Credit: ESA and NASA/SOHO

On July 1, 2013, at 6:09 p.m. EDT, the sun erupted with a coronal mass ejection, or CME, a solar phenomenon that can send billions of tons of solar particles into space that can affect electronic systems in satellites. Experimental NASA research models based on NASA's Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory show that the CME was not Earth-directed and it left the sun at around 570 miles per second.

The CME may, however, pass by NASA's Messenger, Spitzer and STEREO-B satellites, and their mission operators have been notified. There is only very slight particle radiation associated with this event, which is what would normally concern operators of interplanetary spacecraft, because the particles can trip computer electronics aboard interplanetary spacecraft. If warranted, operators can put spacecraft into safe mode to protect the instruments from the solar material.

NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center is the U.S. government's official source for space weather forecasts, alerts, watches and warnings.

Explore further: NASA astronaut memorial stirs memories for shuttle veteran (Update)

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

NASA's STEREO detects a CME from the sun

May 17, 2013

On 5:24 a.m. EDT on May 17, 2013, the sun erupted with an Earth-directed coronal mass ejection or CME, a solar phenomenon that can send billions of tons of solar particles into space that can reach Earth ...

NASA sees three coronal mass ejections in two days

Apr 22, 2013

On April 20, 2013, at 2:54 a.m. EDT, the sun erupted with a coronal mass ejection (CME), a solar phenomenon that can send billions of tons of solar particles into space that can affect electronic systems ...

The sun sends two CMEs toward Mercury

Apr 25, 2013

On the night of April 24 and the morning of April 25, 2013, the sun erupted with two coronal mass ejections (CMEs), solar phenomena that can send billions of tons of solar particles into space that can affect ...

Sun emits a solstice CME

Jun 21, 2013

On June 20, 2013, at 11:24 p.m., the sun erupted with an Earth-directed coronal mass ejection or CME, a solar phenomenon that can send billions of tons of particles into space that can reach Earth one to ...

Earth-directed coronal mass ejection from the sun

Mar 15, 2013

(Phys.org) —On March 15, 2013, at 2:54 a.m. EDT, the sun erupted with an Earth-directed coronal mass ejection (CME), a solar phenomenon that can send billions of tons of solar particles into space and can ...

SDO observes mid-level solar flare

May 22, 2013

UPDATE 16:30 p.m. EDT: The M7-class flare was also associated with a coronal mass ejection or CME, another solar phenomenon that can send billions of tons of particles into space. While this CME was not Ea ...

Recommended for you

Scientists launch CubeSats into radiation belts

17 hours ago

Twin, pintsized satellites built in part at the University of New Hampshire's Space Science Center will be launched into orbit from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California at 9:20 a.m. (EST) Thursday, January ...

Cassini catches Titan naked in the solar wind

17 hours ago

(Phys.org)—Researchers studying data from NASA's Cassini mission have observed that Saturn's largest moon, Titan, behaves much like Venus, Mars or a comet when exposed to the raw power of the solar wind. ...

User comments : 0

Please sign in to add a comment. Registration is free, and takes less than a minute. Read more

Click here to reset your password.
Sign in to get notified via email when new comments are made.