The sun fired off a major solar flare late Tuesday, making it the most powerful sun eruption of the year so far and one of the strongest in recent years. The massive X4.9-class solar flare erupted from an active sunspot, called AR1990, at 7:49 p.m. EST. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory captured high-definition video of the monster solar flare. The spaceecraft recording… Read more →
Sun releases first X class flare of 2014
NASA reports the first significant solar flare of 2014. The flare, which occurred at 1:32 p.m. EST on Tuesday Jan. 7, is listed as a X1.2-class. Solar flares release significant amounts of radiation and, while is not harmful to humans, as it does not penetrate the Earth’s atmosphere, it can cause disruption to GPS and other communication signals.
The sun has undergone a “complete field reversal,” with its north and south poles changing places as it marks the midpoint of Solar Cycle 24. “A reversal of the sun’s magnetic field is, literally, a big event,” NASA’s Dr. Tony Phillips said in a statement issued on the space agency’s website. “The sun’s polar magnetic fields weaken, go to zero and… Read more →
Alex Young is interviewed about the current solar cycle and what a magnetic flip means for the earth and NASA’s study of magnetic fields.
Sun expected to ‘flip upside down’ as magnetic field reverses its polarity
The sun’s magnetic field is about to flip upside down as it reverses its polarity.
In August Nasa said the reversal would happen in three to four months time, although that it would be impossible to pinpoint a more specific date.
Solar physicist Todd Hoeksema from Stanford University said that the reversal would have “ripple effects” across the whole of the solar system.
The Telegraph has the full article
A solar eclipse swept across parts of United States, Africa and Europe, temporarily blocking the sun.
The eclipse was a “hybrid” eclipse, where some parts of the world saw an annular or partial eclipse, while others were expected to see a total eclipse where the moon appears to completely block out the sun.
An annular eclipse occurs when the moon’s orbit is at its furthest point from the Earth and closer to the much larger sun. That juxtaposition allows the moon to block more than 90 percent of the sun’s rays when the two orbs slide into alignment in space.
A total solar eclipse occurs when the moon moves between the sun and the earth, blocking out the sun from the areas in the moon’s shadow. Without the sun’s light, the sky darkens enough for stars to be seen and the sun’s corona makes a spectacular halo around the moon.
A magnetic filament of solar material erupted on the sun in late September, breaking the quiet conditions in a spectacular fashion. The 200,000 mile long filament ripped through the sun’s atmosphere, the corona, leaving behind what looks like a canyon of fire. The glowing canyon traces the channel where magnetic fields held the filament aloft before the explosion. Visualizers at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Md. combined two days of satellite data to create a short movie of this gigantic event on the sun.
What to Expect from the Sun’s Magnetic Field About to Flip
NASA Astrophysicist Dr. Lika Guhathakurta on why the sun’s magnetic field is about to flip and what it means for earth.