Solar storm BOMBARDMENT! After a CME hit yesterday, another is likely to strike Earth soon | Tech News

Solar storm BOMBARDMENT! After a CME hit yesterday, another is likely to strike Earth soon

The solar storm that struck the Earth yesterday, July 25, is believed to be a separate one from the earlier predicted CME, and it is still expected to hit our planet today, creating a double solar storm whammy.

| Updated on: Jul 27 2023, 11:57 IST
Do all solar activities like solar storms, CME, impact Earth? This is what NASA says
solar storm today
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 today
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 expected to strike the Earth today, July 27. (Pixabay)

It appears that yesterday's solar storm was not the end of troubles for the planet, as another coronal mass ejection (CME) cloud is expected to strike the Earth later today, July 27. The CME was part of the released mass that escaped the Sun during the solar flare eruption on July 23. Researchers have been tracking the CME, but yesterday, another CME made an impact unexpectedly. It is believed to be another smaller CME that came from a blind spot. The real threat is still yet to hit, as the incoming CME is much larger and can spark an intense solar storm.

A report by shed light on the confusion. It stated, “Unexpectedly, a CME hit Earth's magnetic field on July 25th (2235 UT), sparking a G1-class geomagnetic storm. It is unclear if this is the early arrival of a CME originally expected on July 27th or a completely different CME which was previously overlooked. Because of the uncertainty, a minor geomagnetic storm watch is still in effect for July 27th”.

Solar storm bombardment shakes the Earth

This will be the fourth solar storm event in the last two weeks, the most frequent since April 2023. And with as many as 10 sunspot regions on the Earth-facing side of the Sun, the frequency does not appear to be slowing down anytime soon.

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But this is nothing in comparison to what we might see in 2025 when researchers have predicted that the Sun will have as many as 115 (or more) active sunspot regions at the same time.

There is a big possibility that such high solar activity can result in powerful solar storms, comparable to the Carrington event. Such solar storms can disrupt GPS, hamper mobile networks and the internet, and even cause a massive power outage by corrupting the power grids. Even the electronic devices on Earth are not safe from malfunctioning.

Know about the Hinode (Solar-B) satellite

Hinode ( Solar-B ) is a Japanese-led solar mission with the participation of the European Space Agency (ESA). It was launched on September 23, 2006, and continues to be in operation today. The main goal of the mission is to study the mechanisms that power the solar atmosphere and look for the causes of violent solar eruptions.

Hinode carries a suite of three science instruments. First, an optical telescope, which images the Sun in visible light; second, an X-ray telescope, which images the Sun in X-rays; and third, an extreme ultraviolet imaging spectrometer, which measures the intensity of extreme ultraviolet (EUV) light from the Sun.

These instruments are used to study the generation, transport, and dissipation of magnetic energy from the photosphere to the corona. They are also used to record how energy stored in the Sun's magnetic field is released as the field rises into the Sun's outer atmosphere.

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First Published Date: 27 Jul, 11:52 IST