Solar Flares and CMEs

  1. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

    NASA has captured some incredible videos

    http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/News080911-xclass.html

    http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/News080411-dblpunch.html

    There was a big blast on June 7.

    http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/News060711-blast.html

    The June 7 eruption was discussed here - https://www.physicsforums.com/showthread.php?t=505203
     
  2. jcsd
  3. Drakkith

    Staff: Mentor

    That 2nd link had a REALLY cool animation! Thanks Astronuc!
     
  4. Holy cow.. the CME on June 7 looks massive..
     
  5. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    A 40 minute video from NASA on recent progress in understanding and predicting CME's.
    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7m1XqyOOChY&feature=player_embedded

    http://science.nasa.gov/science-news/science-at-nasa/2011/18aug_cmemovie/

    Decades of questions above flares, CME's and the solar wind have been building up. Now, in the last five years, a fleet of some 16 NASA heliophysics missions are altering our whole view of our magnetic variable star, according to NASA scientists. In 2016, a mission to the corona itself is in the works!

    Respectfully submitted,
    Steve
     
    Last edited: Aug 19, 2011
  6. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    Last edited: Aug 20, 2011
  7. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    A new X-class flare is reported: http://spaceweather.com/ <-- archive Sept 7, 2011

    This one is an X2.1, with possible CME to arrive at Earth, ETA Sept 8-10.

    Respectfully submitted,
    Steve
     
  8. Drakkith

    Staff: Mentor

    Any idea what we should expect here on Earth when it hits? I'm down here in Louisiana, it would be awesome if I got a chance to see an aurora or something.
     
  9. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    Quick guess is "no way!"

    Perhaps if you lived in Michigan or Minnesota...

    Respectfully,
    Steve
     
  10. Drakkith

    Staff: Mentor

    To cold up there!
     
  11. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    More X-class flares are occurring, with Earth directed CME's possibly on the way.

    http://spaceweather.com/ <-- archive September 24, 2011
    SATURDAY X-FLARE: Behemoth sunspot 1302 unleashed another strong flare on Saturday morning--an X1.9-category blast at 0940 UT. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the extreme ultraviolet flash:

    The movie also shows a shadowy shock wave racing away from the blast site. This is a sign that the blast produced a coronal mass ejection (CME). Analysts at the Goddard Space Weather Lab say the CME could deliver a glancing blow to Earth's magnetic field on Sept. 26 at 14:10 UT (+/- 7 hours); click here for an animated forecast track.

    UPDATE: Sunspot AR1302 followed today's X2-flare with an M7-flare nearly as strong (movie). So far none of the blasts has been squarely Earth-directed, but this could change as the sunspot turns toward our planet in the days ahead. AR1302 is growing and shows no immediate signs of quieting down.

    Respectfully submitted,
    Steve

    PS: These videos of recent aurora are inspiring:

    http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D_OPOb6xoao&feature=related
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
  12. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    http://spaceweather.com/ <-- archive Sept 29, 2011
    REVERBERATIONS: A CME hit Earth's magnetic field on Sept. 26th, sparking one of the strongest magnetic storms in years. At the peak of the Kp=8 disturbance, auroras were sighted around both poles and more than half a dozen US states. Magnetic reverberations continued for more than 48 hours. Here is the view from forests of Skibotn, Norway, two days after the CME impact:
     
  13. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    Over the years I've seen a number of NASA videos where the sun appears to react to comets, once reaching out and snapping off the tail of a distant comet! Naturally I've never whispered this to a soul, because coincidence seemed a more likely explanation. Now, I'm not so sure since NASA itself is openly musing about this.

    http://spaceweather.com/ <-- archive Oct 3, 2011
    COMET AND CME: A comet discovered by amateur astronomers on Friday, Sept. 30th, disintegrated in spectacular fashion the very next day when it plunged into the sun. The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory recorded the comet's last hours. The end was punctuated by an unexpected explosion; click on the image to set the scene in motion:

    Watch the movie again. The timing of the CME so soon after the comet dove into the sun suggests a link. But what? There is no known mechanism for comets to trigger solar explosions. Before 2011 most solar physicists would have discounted the events of Oct. 1st as pure coincidence--and pure coincidence is still the most likely explanation. Earlier this year, however, the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) watched another sungrazer disintegrate in the sun's atmosphere. On July 5, 2011, the unnamed comet appeared to interact with plasma and magnetic fields in its surroundings as it fell apart. Could a puny comet cause a magnetic instability that might propagate and blossom into a impressive CME? The question is not so crazy as it once seemed to be.


    Respectfully submitted,
    Steve
     
  14. Drakkith

    Staff: Mentor

    Perhaps something akin to the butterfly effect?
     
  15. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    Here is a very nifty piece from NASA explaining how the sun snipped off Encke's tail, having to do with opposite magnetic fields between the comet and the CME. The CME has as little mechanical force as a baby's breath, so the analogy to a butterfly could well be appropriate.

    It would be interesting to learn how a short period comet and a CME came to have opposite magnetic fields.



    Respectfully submitted,
    Steve
     
    Last edited by a moderator: Sep 25, 2014
  16. Dotini

    Dotini 701
    Gold Member

    After checking in on spaceweather.com most every morning for a few years, I am gathering the impression that CME's will often collide with one or another of the inner planets, and sometimes even a stray passing comet. Has anyone else noticed this? Is there a known reason for the sun to be reaching out and touching nearby planets and comets, or is merely coincidental?

    Respectfully submitted,
    Steve
     
  17. Drakkith

    Staff: Mentor

    From what I've seen, CME's are usually massive in scale and expand as they move outwards. It's almost inevitable that they hit something it seems to me.
     
  18. Astronuc

    Staff: Mentor

  19. davenn

    davenn 3,547
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    And a X1.8 in the last ~24 hrs :)
    Unfortunately not earth directed tho

    cheers
    Dave
     
  20. But a medium small radiation storm I'm progress..
     
  21. davenn

    davenn 3,547
    Science Advisor
    Gold Member
    2014 Award

    a little difficult to understand :(

    any MAGNETIC storming at the moment is not as a result of this flare
    The CME that was produced wont get to earth vicinity till the 30th - 31st Jan and
    even then its prediced to just miss us see spaceweather.com

    cheers
    Dave
     
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