Eruption lights up sun's surface
The circled bright spot on the sun spewed X-rays and other interesting stuff toward Earth, observers say.
August 3rd, 2011
10:29 AM ET

Eruption lights up sun's surface

A spot on the face of the sun cut loose with an impressive eruption Tuesday, but observers don't think it will amount to much on Earth.

Tuesday's coronal mass ejection spewed tons of gas and radioactive material into space in the general direction of Earth. (You can watch a video of it here.) The solar material is expected to reach Earth sometime Friday, when it may trigger spectacular polar light shows, said Dr. Tony Phillips of Spaceweather.com. Ejections of this size can also cause minor radio interruptions in polar regions, according to the site.

Using observations from three spacecraft with different perspectives, NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center constructed a 3-dimensional model that illustrates the solar material's travel through space.

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Filed under: Science • Space
soundoff (37 Responses)
  1. banasy

    @JB:
    Yes, I remember. It's all good!
    If we didn't have different viewpoints, life would be borrrrrring.....

    @Curious:
    You'll go blind! Now stick a piece of cardboard with a pin and let the sun shine through it!
    You can see the sun just fine that way!

    August 3, 2011 at 4:37 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  2. TvNYC

    Banasy you are cool and all over these blogs. I think I'm going to retire the CNN blogs today..143 everybody!
    Banasy remember my weather predictions for windy city. See ya!

    Jesus is coming!

    August 3, 2011 at 4:47 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  3. Famous Last Words

    Nothing to worry about....

    August 3, 2011 at 7:36 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  4. Sonic10158

    Dr. Tony Philips, calling Major Tom

    August 4, 2011 at 2:58 am | Report abuse | Reply
  5. JIM

    This has been followed by a number of very strong eruptions and coronal mass ejections heade virtually directly at Earth. It is the potential direct impact of so much electromagnetic activity that is of concern. We could lose portions of the the internet as satellite communications become sporadic as well as a host of interferences to digital signals on Earth. Some sensitive electronics could be damaged. By closing your laptop you can add protection against stray magnetic effects as the screens are able to absorb a certain amount of electromagnetic effects, and cell phones can be placed in metal containers, although that will possibly interfere with incoming calls, however your phone will still work at least after this Friday Sat & Sun.

    August 5, 2011 at 12:58 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  6. JIM (Mystery)

    Have been contacting news networks to no avail, and communications outages have begun so I went ahead and released a Solar Storm Warning via my flickr Anti-Gravity account. Not the proper method of releasing a warning but better some know what is going on than none or very few. Also added links there to other sources such as Space Weather Dot Com and NOAA as government warnings as well are active, but the news sites are just a little slow on what is actually happening. Solar Plasma has now reached as far as geosynchronous orbit for satellites and is pushing closer and closer to the planet. DO not trust any GPS devices !!! Big warning on that, go back to more safe methods to determine your location !!!! Gotta hope and pray the plasma does not get any closer to the orbit of the ISS as the ISS does not really have enough hard radiation shielding for something like that, as is they are likely getting raised levels of space radiation already anyhow. Pray for the Astronauts, but am sure that they are well aware of the situation, even if most Earthers are not getting the data.
    Mystery

    August 5, 2011 at 5:44 pm | Report abuse | Reply
  7. Jack

    That silly movie " 2012 " with its 12/21/2012 " End of Days " plot all of a sudden may not be so silly ...... I would so hate it if a goofy, albeit entertaining Hollywood movie actually got a " partial something " right ....... Sheesh >> ......Re: " According to NOAA prediction that " a peak in the sun's magnetic energy cycle and the number of sun spots or flares around 2013 could enable extremely high radiation levels. ......Government studies revealed that extreme solar flare emissions could cause blackouts, possibly for years, in large portions of the U.S.

    August 6, 2011 at 5:28 pm | Report abuse | Reply
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