2022-08-10

A massive solar flare almost hit the Earth earlier this week, causing a small disruption in radio systems across the globe. Now, the National Space and Aeronautics Administration (NASA) has warned about more potential blasts from the Sun that can cause blackouts.

According to the US Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC), an X2.2 flare occurred at 11.57 pm EDT on April 19. The flare erupted from a region just beyond the southwest limb of the Sun – likely former Region 2992.

On April 21, NASA also released the details of the solar flare, sharing a stunning image of the space event that had the potential to cause a major blackout on high-altitude areas on Earth. The space agency said that the Sun blast was categorized as an M9.7 class flare.

Though many solar flares have been witnessed in the past few weeks, experts are now saying that there may be more Sun blasts that can hit the planet soon. Solar and space experts have said that additional solar flares and even Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) can hit the Earth in a few days.

The Centre of Excellence in Space Sciences India (CESSI), which actively monitors space activities, was also keeping a watch on the most recent solar flare, and warned about potential Sun blasts in the future.

In a tweet, the CESSI wrote, “Our DBM model fit indicates the CME will miss Earth with at best a chance of a flank impact. Therefore we do not expect any significant geomagnetic perturbation from this solar storm. Note that an active alert is in place for M/X class flare possibility from AR 12993/12994.”

According to NASA and NOAA, the Earth has been under the radar of solar blasts in recent days due to the Sun beginning ‘Solar Cycle 25’, which is expected to peak in 2025. Solar flares happen due to the twisting up of magnetic fields on the Sun’s surface, which itself is caused due to the plasma in the Sun moving at different speeds and directions.

READ | WATCH: Stunning visuals of Sun emerge after getting hit by geomagnetic storm

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