The Sun on Tuesday morning unleashed two high-powered X-class solar flares, offering a celestial treat for the astronomers.
The short-lived explosions, that were expected to disrupt high-frequency radio communications on Earth, were captured by NASA cameras in early hours of Tuesday.
The NASA scientists have refuted the threats that the solar flares generally pose to humans. Both the flares were X-class and were low on the X-scale, the scientists said.
The first flare occurred at 7:41 am EDT (11:41 UT) and registered as an X2.2. The second event occurred just over an hour later at 8:52 am EDT and registered as an X1.5-class flare blazed from the same spot. The second flare was a little less than half the strength of the first.
According to the scientists, the flares are the result on powerful magnetic fields rising up from deep within the sun.
The solar events occur around active regions on the sun’s surface. Scientists say if a flare occur over an active region of the Sun that faces the Earth, it can trigger a geomagnetic storm which will lead to an increased auroral activity and potential communication interference.
A solar flare is a large burst of x-ray and light energy coming from the sun that streams out into space. Scientists have been investigating about their cause for long but still unclear. However, they credit fluctuations in the magnetic field of the sun responsible for shaping and directing the flow of hot plasma and solar material that compose the star.
Powerful solar flares affects living creatures on Earth as it increases the risk of sunburns, scrambling cell phone calls and sometimes knocking out wireless networks entirely.
The scientists across the globe are trying hard to learn more and more about the inner layers of the sun, their composition, how the layers react to each other, their densities, velocities, and temperatures of wavelengths. This will allow scientists to have a more refine information on recommended exposure limits for humans to potential radiation damage for electronics and networks.
The biggest solar storm ever recorded hit the Earth in 1859.