The Biggest Solar Storm In A Decade Knocked Out Earth's GPS Communications

Biggest flare in two decades

A strong solar flare on Wednesday, the biggest in 12 years, caused hour-long radio blackouts in some places on Earth and may still damage satellites and power systems in the next two days.

The X-class flare was the strongest in more than ten years, and could lead to significant aurora activity.

"Flash has already given the deterioration in the quality of connections in Europe and America", - said the expert.

Two high-intensity solar flares were emitted on Wednesday, the second of which was the most intense recorded since the start of this sun cycle in December 2008, NASA said.

Solar flares occur in cooler regions of the sun, called sunspots. A few minutes into the open space goes up to a trillion megatons of TNT.

Amidst the onslaught of Hurricane Harvey and Hurricane Irma, we should be ready to face another storm, this time from the Sun as it exudes huge amount of charged particles towards Earth. If they become too entangled, the stored energy is released in the form of a solar flare. The last powerful solar flare had a measurement of X9 on December 5, 2006.

The flares that occurred September 6 were responsible for high-frequency radio blackouts on the dayside of the planet lasting an hour. Scientists are still watching to see if a CME is making its way toward the Earth. While we're treated to a fantastic light show in the form of the northern lights (which are expected tonight, due to a CME that left the sun on Tuesday), powerful CMEs can cause power grid disruptions.

Also, the flares can cause throw out people's internal clocks.

"The satellites are designed very specifically to take into account these kinds of events", Terry Onsager, a physicist at the NOAA Space Weather Prediction Center, told Live Science. "But we await SOHO/LASCO coronagraph imagery for confirmation". The largest solar flare ever recorded was an X20 in April 2001.

"X-class denotes the most intense flares, while the number provides more information about its strength".

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