- Solar flares contain solar particles, which pose a threat to astronauts, satellites, power grids, and airplanes.
- In addition, they are very difficult to predict in advance.
- Scientists believe they know where these particles come from, which could help astronomers better predict solar flares that pose a threat to Earth and its technology.
Every now and then the Sun spits out a solar flare that leaves Earth’s critical infrastructure on the edge. One example is the “Carrington Event” of 1859 in which a large solar storm caused telegraph systems to fail across Europe and America. Another is the massive blackout of 1989 in Quebec.
Knowing when a solar flare is going to occur could help Earth better prepare for solar storms and reduce the risk to human lives. In what could be a milestone in that research, a new study by astronomers at University College London (UCL) and George Mason University could at least point others to where to look.
A medium-sized solar flare (M2) and coronal mass ejection (CME) erupted from the same large active region of the sun on July 14, 2017. The rocket lasted for nearly two hours, a fairly long duration, according to NASA .
So what are we …
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