The M4.4 category eruption at 1:11 p.m. UTC produced a shortwave radio blackout over the south Atlantic.
It also sent a significant CME into space, but the storm cloud will not hit Earth as the source of the flare is an unnumbered sunspot just behind the sun’s eastern limb.
A few days ago, another sun spot erupted while facing Earth.
How are X-ray solar flares classified?
A solar flare is an explosion on the Sun. Such an eruption occurs when energy stored magnetic fields is suddenly released.
The resulting burst of radiation hurled into space goes from radio waves to x-rays and gamma-rays.
Solar flares are classified into 3 categories according to their x-ray brightness in the wavelength range 1 to 8 Angstroms:
1. X-class flares are major events that can trigger planet-wide radio blackouts and long-lasting radiation storms. Peak intensity: I > = 10-4
2. M-class flares are medium-sized events that can cause brief radio blackouts that affect Earth’s polar regions. Peak intensity: 10-5 < = I < 10-4
3. C-class flares are small events with few noticeable consequences here on Earth. Peak intensity: 10-6 < = I < 10-5
Each of these categories is divided into nine subdivisions (C1 to C9, M1 to M9, and X1 to X9).
So we had a M4.4 today. It’s not the most powerful ever, but the strongest in the past 3 years; so pretty strong! We were lucky this time! Let’s wait until the sunspot faces Earth… It may erupt another time! More solar flare news on Space Weather, Strange Sounds and Steve Quayle.
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