NASA captures images of strongest Solar Flare in 12 years

Sep 9, 2017 09:07 IST
Solar Flare
Solar Flare

NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), which watches the sun constantly, on 6 September 2017 captured the images of two significant Solar Flares emitted by Sun. The Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation.

These solar flares are seen as the strongest ones ever in a decade.

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Highlights of the Solar Flares
• Sun emitted two strong solar flares. The first flare is classified as an X2.2 flare and the second is an X9.3 flare.
• Both the flares erupted from an active region which also produced a mid-level solar flare on 4 September 2017.
• The X9.3 flare was the largest flare in the current solar cycle which began in December 2008, and is now decreasing in intensity and heading towards 'Solar Minimum'.
• 'Solar Minimum' is such phase of the solar cycle  when these eruptions on the sun are increasingly rare, but they can be intense. The radio black out from this particular flare has already passed.

The harmful radiation of a flare cannot pass through Earth's atmosphere to physically affect humans. However, when these flares are intense enough, they can disturb the atmosphere in the layer where GPS and communications signals travel.

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