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An aurora will light up in unusual places as solar storm rages

An aurora will light up in unusual places as solar storm rages

More kaleidoscopic light shows could be seen in skies across the Northern Hemisphere as a powerful solar storm ramps up.

According to the US National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, an extreme geomagnetic storm that hit for the first time last week is expected to intensify. Many are due to coronal mass ejections Bombarding Earth's outer atmosphere the location Later on May 12

This means that many people who haven't witnessed the rare aurora borealis can still get a chance to see it. People in the United States, Great Britain, and other places around the world reported seeing the Northern Lights on Saturday, which are usually only visible at night near the North Pole. However, a similar effect occurs near Antarctica.

It was the sun A strong solar flare — A huge burst of energy — 12:26 a.m. ET Sunday. This flare-up was classified as An X-1.0, among the most intense flares ever observed. Experts warned that the event could cause temporary problems or lost signals for users of high-frequency radio communications.

“Solar flares send tons of energy into space at the speed of light,” according to NASA. “Sometimes flares are accompanied by large solar eruptions. These eruptions are called coronal mass ejections.”

The aurora's display of colors is the result of electrons ejected from the Sun during solar storms. As the charged particles reach the ground, They travel along the planet's invisible magnetic field lines. In the atmosphere, interaction with air. When those particles hit the gas, they heat up and glow, according to NASA.

Colors vary depending on the type of gas in the atmosphere and its altitude. Oxygen glows red or blue, while nitrogen can glow green, blue, or pink. Recent strong solar storm conditions are causing the aurora to spread out around the North Pole, allowing those who live farther south to see it.

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Like the stormy seasons on Earth, the sun experiences. A weather pattern that repeats every 11 years.. At the beginning and end of the cycle, that activity is at its quietest. But solar activity increases, peaks in the middle of the cycle, and the Sun rotates with giant eruptions.

Now that cycle is at its peak, about to arrive. Its maximum point By mid-2025. That's why reports of solar flares and coronal mass ejections — plasma from the Sun's outer atmosphere, known as the corona — are so much in the news.

Coronal mass ejections such as near-Earth events, or CMEs, are called “space weather.” Although the sun is near. 93 million miles awayspace weather can affect Earth and other parts of the solar system.

Scientists have limited ability to predict space weather. Here, the atmosphere and magnetic field shield people against most Adverse health effects of solar radiation. However, these events can have catastrophic consequences on technology, disrupting power grids, telecommunications, and GPS systems.

Although these events are not frequent, a A solar flare occurred in March 1989.For example, all of Quebec, Canada experienced a 12-hour power outage. It also jammed radio signals for Radio Free Europe.

Before Sunday's flare, the sun came out. Two other strong solar flares Just before 9:30 pm ET Friday and 8 am ET Saturday, according to NASA. of the US space agency Solar Dynamics ObservatoryWho constantly watches the sun, has also taken pictures of these events. The previous two flares were classified as X-5.8 and X-1.5 respectively.

NOAA, which is Continue to monitor the storm The US government said the flares appear to be connected to a sunspot estimated to be 15 times the size of Earth.

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