Solar Flares battering Earth — causing radio blackouts over the Atlantic Ocean

Solar Flares battering Earth — causing radio blackouts over the Atlantic Ocean

NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory reported an M- and S-class solar flares released on May 3, 2022. During the peak of the flare, high frequency communication may have been prone to contact loss over the Atlantic Ocean, and portions of eastern South America, western Africa and Europe. The source region for the flare has yet to be identified as it still lies just beyond the limb, however, it is only a day or two from rotating into view.

Solar flares usually take place in active regions, which are areas on the Sun marked by the presence of strong magnetic fields; typically associated with sunspot groups. As these magnetic fields evolve, they can reach a point of instability and release energy in a variety of forms. These include electromagnetic radiation, which are observed as solar flares.

The image posted by SDO shows a subset of extreme ultraviolet light that highlights the extremely hot material in flares, and which is colorized in yellow.

Space Weather Prediction Center posted a map showing primary area of impacts.

Here are videos of previous observations:

Solar Cycle 25 has begun in September 2020. Scientists expect the Sun’s activity to ramp up toward the next predicted maximum in July 2025. NASA and NOAA, along with the Federal Emergency Management Agency and other federal agencies and departments, work together on the National Space Weather Strategy and Action Plan to enhance space weather preparedness and protect the nation from space weather hazards.

NOAA provides space weather predictions and satellites to monitor space weather in real time; NASA is the nation’s research arm, helping improve our understanding of near-Earth space, and ultimately, forecasting models.

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