Huge Solar Flare

On August 9th at 0805 UT, sunspot 1263 produced an X7-class solar flare--only the third X-flare of new Solar Cycle 24 and the most powerful so far. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured the explosion's extreme ultraviolet flash:

The brunt of the explosion was not Earth directed. Nevertheless, radiation from the flare created waves of ionization in Earth's upper atmosphere, briefly disrupting communications at some VLF and HF radio frequencies. The blast also accelerated a mild torrent of protons toward Earth. The CME will probably miss Earth. At this time, however, we cannot rule out a glancing blow from the flank of the cloud on August 11th or 12th

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