Skip to comments.Huge Solar Flare! 10/24/03
Posted on 10/24/2003 3:50:19 AM PDT by GRRRRR
SOLAR EXPLOSIONS: Solar activity is high. An intense X5-class solar flare erupted today (Oct. 23rd at 8:35 UT) from sunspot 486 near the sun's southeastern limb.
The explosion hurled a coronal mass ejection (CME) into space. See the movie. Although the CME was not Earth-directed, it could deliver a glancing blow to our planet's magnetic field as early as Oct 24th (although the 25th is more likely).
Another CME was already en route when this morning's explosion occured. Pictured right, it was launched on Oct 22nd by an explosion near sunspot 484. Forecasters expect it to arrive on Oct. 24th and possibly trigger a strong geomagnetic storm. Sky watchers at middle latitudes should be alert for auroras.
If it's the same event I remember, I found out about it on a thread here on FR. In an unrelated thread someone started posting messages about spotting the aurora in the North East, maybe New York or New Jersey. At first I thought they were tin foil hat types talking about the supposed spy plane named aurora. A few more folks chimed in from other locations and I finally realized it was the northern lights they were talking about. Then the reports started coming from closer and closer to where we live in Memphis. When someone in the Missouri boot heel, just 80 or so miles north, said they saw it I ran outside. Sure enough, the northern sky was glowing red and green and slowly shifting. It was as if there was a big stadium a mile or two away with bright red and green floodlights, just out of view.
FR is the best place on the net for real time events, of all types.
Not sure what our skies will be like tonight......days of cloudy weather here....
Illustration by K. Endo, Nikkei Science, Inc., Japan
Solar wind, as depicted in this artist's illustration, travels from the Sun and envelops the Earth's magnetic field. High-energy pulses of solar wind from sunspot activity ("solar bursts" or "plasma bubbles") travel from the Sun to the Earth at speeds exceeding 500 miles per second. The pulses distort the Earth's magnetic field and produce geomagnetic storms that disrupt the Earth's environment.
..In January 1997, a geomagnetic storm severely damaged the U.S. Telstar 401 communication satellite, which was valued at $200 million, and left it inoperable. A geomagnetic storm in 1994 damaged two Canadian communication satellites, which were replaced at a cost of about $400 million. A geomagnetic storm in 1989 "blacked out" the power distribution system for Quebec, Canada, and left 6 million people without electricity for 9 hours at a cost of $300 million. Although these events and their specific impacts were not predicted, current technology promises to provide real-time warnings and measures to contend with solar-induced storms...
That was last fall. Here in Michigan it was absolutely spectacular...colors were streaming towards me as I looked up. I called my "city-friends" and they could see a little of it, but I got the whole show. Wow!
P.S. - Is FreeRepublic really, really slow today?
Tomorrow: Bush Administration to facing mounting criticism over statements concerning Huge Solar flare
Yjrtr fp mpy drr, yp nr smu smp;s,ord yjsy zo vpi;f drr/
Is that a scientific term? lol
I don't know, but with a flare up like this, all the Preparation H in the world aint gonna help.
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