Solar flare hits Earth: 'Blackout' triggered as Sun unleashes 'strong' explosion of energy


The weakest, C-class flares, typically go unnoticed by most as they tend not to disrupt tech on Earth.

X-class flares are much more concerning as they have the potential to knock out radio communications and trigger radiation storms in the upper reaches of the atmosphere.

One such flare erupted from the Sun last month and was followed by a significant coronal mass ejection (CME) – a large stream of plasma and magnetic field from the Sun’s atmosphere.

Today’s storm was an M2-class, meaning it was medium-sized but still big enough to disrupt communications over parts of the planet.

Medium-sized flares are sometimes followed by minor radiation storms and CMEs.

According to the website SpaceWeather.com, the flare appears to have knocked out some radio communications over the Americas.

The website said: “An active region located just behind the Sun’s northeastern limb unleashed a strong M2-class solar flare today, November 9, at 5.01pm UT.

“X-rays from the flare caused a minor shortwave radio blackout over the Americas.

“The explosion almost certainly produced a CME, but it won’t be Earth0dorected because of the blast’s farside location.”



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