The 4th of July won’t just be about a potential Higgs boson discovery, it will also be the day in which America celebrates its independence, oh yeah and the time of a massive solar flare.
According to reports at 10:52 UT the suns active region AR1515 released a M5.6-class solar flare towards Earth, sending X-ray and extreme ultraviolet radiation in our direction.
Discovery revealed that the flare was almost strong enough to become an X-class flare, the most powerful variety of solar eruption.
While the solar flare is not harmful to humans on the ground it does wreak havoc on the upper atmosphere by sending ionization waves through the ionosphere, in some cases causing disruptions to global communications.
The solar flare according to Spaceweather.com was discovered by Rob Stemmes of the Polar Light Center in Lofoten, Norway. A powerful SID was witnessed over Europe only a short time after the flare erupted from the sun.
Solar flares have been around for as long as the sun and happen in cycles along the sun’s photosphere (solar surface).
Space.com reports that this first solar flare is just the start of what is expected to be a solar storm that reaches well into Fourth of July festivities.
With a wave of plasma expected to Earth by Independence Day it looks like there will be more in our skies than just fireworks and if we could actually see the solar flare show with our own eyes, well we would go blind but before that we would stare in amazement at mother nature’s own massive fireworks display.