Danger! Volatile sun launches massive solar storm toward Earth

NOAA meteorologists have warned of a solar storm that could hit Earth soon.

The Sun is currently near the peak of its 11-year solar cycle, which has resulted in frequent solar flares and coronal mass ejections. As the cycle ends, the frequency of these phenomena will decrease. Scientists have been monitoring the sun for signs of increased activity and have issued a solar storm warning. A minor G-1 class geomagnetic storm impacted the planet yesterday and we can now see a solar flare emerging from the Sun that could spew a coronal mass ejection (CME) that could hit the planet soon.

NOAA meteorologists have revealed that an M4-class solar flare erupted from the Sun on January 14, leaving dark plasma in the canopy of Sunspot AR3182. This debris has carved a path to escape through the Sun’s atmosphere and is hurtling toward Earth. The CME could hit Earth’s magnetic field on January 19.

The NOAA report stated: “A dark plasma spin spewed from the sun on January 14, powered by a double-dipping M4-class solar flare in the magnetic canopy of sunspot AR3182. The debris spiraled through the sun’s atmosphere, a process similar to a blender that spewed a coronal mass ejection (CME) into space. NOAA analysts say the CME could give a glancing blow to Earth’s magnetic field on January 19.”

Just yesterday, a geomagnetic storm hit the Earth. Fortunately, it was a minor storm and was classified as a G-1 class storm. The shocking thing about this storm is its focus. Instead of coming in full throttle, this geomagnetic storm came stealthily, as it was embedded within a moving stream of solar wind, obscuring some of its usual signatures.

As the CME has not yet hit Earth, the extent of potential damage cannot yet be determined. However, it is a reminder of the power of the sun and the need for continued research and monitoring to better predict and prepare for these events in the future.

To accomplish this, NASA has a mission to study the rising solar activity of the Sun. NASA’s SunRISE mission, which stands for Sun Radio Interferometer Space Experiment, is an upcoming mission expected to launch in 2024 to study and determine how Giant explosions of energetic particles on the Sun originate and evolve as they expand into space.

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