SDO sees a mid-level solar flare: Nov. 3

NASA's SDO sees a mid-level solar flare: Nov. 3
NASA's SDO captured this image of a solar flare on the sun on Nov. 3, 2014. Harmful radiation from a flare cannot pass through Earth's atmosphere to physically affect humans on the ground, however, when intense enough, they can disturb the atmosphere where GPS and communications signals travel. Credit: NASA/SDO

The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 5:40 p.m. EST on Nov. 3, 2014. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event. Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation. Harmful radiation from a flare cannot pass through Earth's atmosphere to physically affect humans on the ground, however—when intense enough—they can disturb the atmosphere in the layer where GPS and communications signals travel.

To see how this event may affect Earth, please visit NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center at http://spaceweather.gov, the U.S. government's official source for space weather forecasts, alerts, watches and warnings.

This flare is classified as an M6.5 flare.

M-class flares are a tenth the size of the most intense flares, the X-class flares. The number provides more information about its strength. An M2 is twice as intense as an M1, an M3 is three times as intense, etc.

This movie shows 8 days – from Oct. 19-27, 2014 — in the life of the largest active region seen on the sun since 1990, including five X-class flares that erupted during that time.

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Citation: SDO sees a mid-level solar flare: Nov. 3 (2014, November 4) retrieved 21 November 2019 from https://phys.org/news/2014-11-sdo-mid-level-solar-flare-nov.html
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