A series of explosions on the sun could result in a “cannibal” solar storm headed for Earth.
In the past few days, the Sun has experienced two coronal mass ejections, or CMEs, with particles erupting from its surface.
They are now on their way to Earth, where they could disrupt satellites and other important systems, space weather experts have warned.
And if they head towards us together, they could cannibalize each other into an even more powerful explosion. Such cannibalism happens when a CME is thrown out of the sun and then followed by a more energetic and faster explosion that then consumes it.
The couple is expected to arrive on Earth on Thursday or Friday.
There is a possibility that they will result in a G3 class geomagnetic storm, called a “strong” storm. Such events are categorized on a scale from G1 to G5, the latter including widespread problems with power systems and communications disruptions.
Worst-case scenario, however, this week’s solar storms are expected to only hit G3. This could cause minor problems for some power systems, impact on satellites and problems with navigation systems.
It could also mean that the Aurora Borealis, or Northern Lights, are visible much farther south than usual. The activity means lights could be visible in the sky in northern England or New York, according to the UK Met Office.
The Sun remains in a particularly active phase, with observers suggesting that the next few days could bring “high” levels of solar activity. That, in turn, could lead to even more solar flares.
https://www.independent.ie/news/environment/explosions-on-the-sun-could-see-a-cannibal-solar-storm-headed-for-earth-41919992.html Explosions on the sun could see a “cannibal” solar storm headed for Earth