Solar storm ALERT! Debris from a magnetic filament eruption to strike Earth soon | Tech News

Solar storm ALERT! Debris from a magnetic filament eruption to strike Earth soon

NOAA forecasters have revealed that a solar storm can occur in two days’ time as solar particles released during a magnetic filament eruption are headed for the Earth. Check details.

By: HT TECH
| Updated on: Aug 25 2023, 11:59 IST
Do all solar activities like solar storms, CME, impact Earth? This is what NASA says
Solar storm
1/5 Sun is a source of energy and a lot of activities keep on happening on the fireball. But can Earth be impacted by solar activities? Before we tell you that, it is important to know what solar activity is? According to NASA, solar flares, coronal mass ejections, high-speed solar wind, and solar energetic particles are all forms of solar activity. All solar activity is driven by the solar magnetic field. (NASA)
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2/5 Solar flares impact Earth only when they occur on the side of the sun facing Earth. Because flares are made of photons, they travel out directly from the flare site, so if we can see the flare, we can be impacted by it. (Pixabay)
Solar storm
3/5 Coronal mass ejections, also called CMEs, are large clouds of plasma and magnetic field that erupt from the sun. These clouds can erupt in any direction, and then continue on in that direction, plowing right through the solar wind. Only when the cloud is aimed at Earth will the CME hit Earth and therefore cause impacts. (NASA)
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4/5 High-speed solar wind streams come from areas on the sun known as coronal holes. These holes can form anywhere on the sun and usually, only when they are closer to the solar equator, do the winds they produce impact Earth. (NASA)
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5/5 Solar energetic particles are high-energy charged particles, primarily thought to be released by shocks formed at the front of coronal mass ejections and solar flares. When a CME cloud plows through the solar wind, high velocity solar energetic particles can be produced and because they are charged, they must follow the magnetic field lines that pervade the space between the Sun and the Earth. Therefore, only the charged particles that follow magnetic field lines that intersect the Earth will result in impacts. (NASA)
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Know all about the solar storm that is expected to hit the Earth on August 27. (Pixabay)

The Sun was quiet for almost two weeks. This was a first for 2023 which has witnessed frequent solar storms, solar flare eruptions, and incoming waves of solar winds. In fact, before this, the longest period we went without any Earth-directed solar activity was one week, which occurred in April. But now, the Sun has sprung back into action as a magnetic filament erupted on the southwestern limb on August 23. During the eruption, solar material was released into space and the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) has predicted that the cloud of solar debris will hit the Earth on Sunday, August 27 sparking a solar storm.

According to a report by SpaceWeather.com, “A magnetic filament erupted near the sun's southwestern limb on Aug. 23rd (movie). The debris might graze Earth's magnetic field on Aug. 27th, according to NOAA models. A glancing blow could spark G1-class geomagnetic storms with auroras around the Arctic Circle”.

Solar storm to arrive on August 27

The NOAA prediction suggests that the eventual storm will be a G1-class geomagnetic storm, which is considered to be quite minor. Such solar storms may not be strong enough to affect mobile networks or damage satellites, but they can still cause radio blackouts and disrupt GPS signals. Things can worsen if these CME clouds pick up solar winds on their way and combine with them to spark terrifying solar storms. Additionally, auroras may also be visible in the high latitude areas.

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But this is not the end of the troubles for the Earth. Just a couple of hours ago, Space Weather Live posted on its X account that an M1.4 class solar flare had erupted. This was the second M-class solar flare eruption in the last three days, with the first one exploding on August 23. The exact region of this flare is not known but it is believed that one of the many sunspot regions might have turned unstable.

This also means that in the coming days, this region can also trigger an X-class solar flare eruption which can send a terrifying coronal mass ejection (CME) towards the Earth.

NOAA's DSCOVR satellite's role in solar storm monitoring

NOAA monitors solar storms and Sun's behavior using its DSCOVR satellite which became operational in 2016. The recovered data is then run through the Space Weather Prediction Center and the final analysis is prepared. The different measurements are done on temperature, speed, density, degree of orientation, and frequency of the solar particles.

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First Published Date: 25 Aug, 11:37 IST
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