At 1015 Universal Time, an X-class solar flare was emitted from the sunspot region 9393, sending a coronal mass ejection toward earth. This follows a coronal mass ejection emitted two days ago. Energy from the first CME is expected to arrive on Friday, and from the second on Saturday.
With an X-class flare, which is the most powerful measured, there is always the potential for strong geomagnetic storm on earth and potential danger to satellites. Astronauts aboard the International Space Station will retire to radiation shielded areas if radiation levels on the station should exceed established safety tolerances.
Individals above lattitude 45 may expect auroras after nightfall on Friday and Saturday nights. In the U.S., this would include the northern tier of states west of the Great Lakes. Should the second CME prove extremely powerful, auroras may be visible farther south.
It is not anticipated that there will be any threat to life as a result of this solar activity, but a powerful geomagnetic event may black out radio communications over wide areas, damage satellites, and overload power transmission lines.
Forecasters estimate a 15% to 25% chance of severe magnetic storming over the next few days.
NOTE: This news story, previously published on our old site, will have any links removed.