Should you be worried? High-speed SOLAR STORM flowing from 'hole' in the sun may hit Earth on August 3
As per National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), a solar storm might hit the Earth on Wednesday, August 3. High-speed solar winds from a 'hole' in the sun are set to hit Earth's magnetic field, triggering a minor G-1 geomagnetic storm. NOAA forecasters say that a high-speed stream of solar wind is expected to graze Earth's magnetic field. The gaseous material is flowing from a southern hole in the sun's atmosphere.
According to DailyMail, a G-1 storm may weaken power grid fluctuations, impact satellites, and cause auroras in regions around the north pole: in this case, the electric colors will be seen in skies over Canada and Alaska. This storm comes as the sun ramps up into the most active phase of its roughly 11-year-long solar cycle.
Mike Cook, who works in space weather operations, told DailyMail that the hole has enhanced solar wind speeds by shooting solar winds out in a stream. He also notes that it is forecasted to cause G-1 conditions, but one will have to "see if that comes true in the next 24 to 48 hours."
As per reports, there was also a C9.3 flare that shot out of the sun on July 31 that did not erupt on the side of the sun facing Earth, but it exploded enough to be captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.
A coronal mass ejection (CME) – a huge cloud of solar material that erupts from the Sun – can carry the mass of over 250 elephants and has the energy of 75 trillion lightning strikes. You can learn more about CMEs and other solar activity here: https://t.co/gnvcbAZAQS pic.twitter.com/T8zgcPzUuC— NASA Sun & Space (@NASASun) July 31, 2022
In this, the Sun is at the center (gray), as seen by the Solar Dynamics Observatory, surrounded by its inner corona (red) and the outer corona (blue). The Earth experienced a solar storm on July 19. Tamitha Skov, a researcher at the US Aerospace Corporation, spoke about and warned of a solar flare in the shape of a snake on her Twitter profile.
Direct Hit! A snake-like filament launched as a big #solarstorm while in the Earth-strike zone. NASA predicts impact early July 19. Strong #aurora shows possible with this one, deep into mid-latitudes. Amateur #radio & #GPS users expect signal disruptions on Earth's nightside. pic.twitter.com/7FHgS63xiU— Dr. Tamitha Skov (@TamithaSkov) July 16, 2022
Coronal Mass Ejections
Solar storms occur when the Sun's atmosphere ejects plasma, with the solar wind also carrying with it the solar magnetic field also known as coronal mass ejections (CME) that make up solar storms. According to LiveScience: "Astronomers have known since 1775 that solar activity rises and falls in cycles, but recently, the sun has been more active than expected, with nearly double the sunspot appearances predicted by NOAA. Scientists anticipate that the sun's activity will steadily climb for the next few years, reaching an overall maximum in 2025 before decreasing again."
Solar storms release CME that cause geomagnetic storms on Earth and can affect electrical infrastructure. According to NASA, a large CME can contain a billion tons of matter that can be accelerated to several million miles per hour in a spectacular explosion. Solar material streams out through the interplanetary medium, impacting any planet or spacecraft in its path. CMEs are sometimes associated with flares, however, they can occur independently as well.