Big solar flare

A dramatic eruption happened on the Sun this evening. An as yet unnumbered sunspot let go a big M class solar flare that my solar monitor picked up. If you'd been watching my Surfing The Sun website you would have seen it happen in real time at about 17:45 UT. Since it is still not turned toward us, the effect on the ionosphere was not as noticable. This flare released a huge CME that was not geoeffective (Earth directed) but was captured by the Solar Dynamics Observatory. As this sunspot turns to face us it may provide yet more ammunition for northern lights displays.

Dave Gradwell

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