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The sun unleashed a major solar flare on Saturday (March 29), causing a radio blackout for several minutes on Earth, space weather experts say.
The brief X1-class flare erupted from the now decaying sunspot AR2017 at 1:48 p.m. EDT (1748 GMT) on Saturday, according to a report from the NOAA-led Space Weather Prediction Center. Although AR2017 is dissipating, it may still produce more solar flares in the coming days
The coronal mass ejection could trigger a minor geomagnetic storm on April 2....The flare also produced a "magnetic crochet," a rippling in Earth's magnetic field that occurs during the flare. The effects of a CME are usually only felt a few days after the flare, when the plasma has time to reach Earth and disrupt its magnetic field
On Saturday, March 29th, the magnetic canopy of sunspot AR2017 erupted, producing a brief but intense X1-class solar flare. A flash of extreme UV radiation sent waves of ionization rippling through Earth's upper atmosphere and disturbed the normal propagation of terrestrial radio transmissions. Radio engineer Stan Nelson of Roswell, NM, was monitoring WWV at 20 MHz when the signal wobbled then disappeared entirely for several minutes:
A magnetic crochet is a ripple in Earth’s magnetic field caused by electrical currents flowing in air 60 km to 100 km above our heads. Unlike geomagnetic disturbances that arrive with CMEs days after a flare, a magnetic crochet occurs while the flare is in progress. It arises from the increased ionisation in the D and E layers of the ionosphere caused by the massive increase in X-ray radiation generated by the solar flare. This ionisation changes the properties (especially the conductivity) of these ionospheric layers allowing electric currents to flow more easily. It is the magnetic effect of these currents which produce the jump in the earth’s magnetic field. As the flare declines, the ionospheric layers quickly return to their previous state, the electric currents in the layers return to normal, and the change in the magnetic field ends. Magnetic crochets are quite rare because they are only observed during large flares which rise to a peak very quickly. Also, they are mostly observed in locations close to the sub-solar point (i.e. the point on earth when the sun is overhead). - See more at: www.thedailysheeple.com...
"With shades of reds, purples, pinks and oranges, I felt I was on another planet in some scifi flick. I've seen other people's timelapses of northern lights but never in these colors nor so intense. Truly unreal."
Pink aurorae are especially rare. When it comes to the Northern Lights, incoming electrons colliding with oxygen and nitrogen high in the Earth's atmosphere typically give rise to rippling sheets of green, red and blue. Pink results from a combination of the red and blue hues emitted by nitrogen molecules, and it's rare to see them as vibrant as they appear here.