Strong Solar Storm Affecting Earth

A strong solar flare erupted from the sun Sunday evening and continues to affect the earth. The NWS Space Weather Prediction Center is currently monitoring the storm and posting updates to their page and to FaceBookThe impacts of this storm are considered minimal and will be relegated to the Earth's poles, where aircraft communications may be degraded along with potential flight rerouting.

The eruption, seen in this image below, is the strongest since September 2005. 

Solar Storm
Image is from the NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows the solar flare that erupted Sunday evening

In addition to the flare, a Coronal Mass Ejection accompanied the flare. A geomagnetic storm is a near certainty from this event, with G2 (Moderate) levels expected to start around 900 am EST Tuesday, continuing into Wednesday.

This could pose an impact to power grids, where voltage corrections may be required along with false alarms triggered on some protective devices. Intermittent satellite navigation and low-frequency radio navigation problems may occur.

With strong geomagnetic storms possible, high-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras.

For more information, follow the storm’s progress at the NWS Space Weather Prediction Center

Return to News Archive is the U.S. government's official web portal to all federal, state and local government web resources and services.