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UPDATED: A Significant Flare Surges Off the Sun
September 11, 2014

[image-110]UPDATE: Two coronal mass ejections, or CMEs, also exploded off the sun from the same active region as the Sept. 10, X-class flare. Images of the CMEs were captured by the joint European Space Agency and NASA's Solar and Heliospheric Observatory and NASA's Solar and Terrestrial Relations Observatory. Scientists use observations like these to determine the speed, strength, and size of CMEs.

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A Significant Flare Surges Off the Sun                         September 10, 2014

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The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 1:48 p.m. EDT on Sept. 10, 2014. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured images of the event. Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation. Harmful radiation from a flare cannot pass through Earth's atmosphere to physically affect humans on the ground.  However -- when intense enough -- they can disturb the atmosphere in the layer where GPS and communications signals travel.

[image-51]To see how this event may affect Earth, please visit NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center at http://spaceweather.gov, the U.S. government's official source for space weather forecasts, alerts, watches and warnings.

This flare is classified as an X1.6 class flare. "X-class" denotes the most intense flares, while the number provides more information about its strength. An X2 is twice as intense as an X1, an X3 is three times as intense, etc.

Updates will be provided as needed.

What is a solar flare?

For answers to this and other space weather questions, please visit the Spaceweather Frequently Asked Questions page.

Related Link

› View Past Solar Activity
 

Karen C. Fox
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Md.

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014.
An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows light in the 131 Angstrom wavelength, which is typically colorized in teal.
Image Credit: 
NASA/SDO
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An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. These images were captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory.
Image Credit: 
NASA/SDO/Goddard
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The CME associated with a Sept. 10, 2014, X1.6 flare is visible in this image from the joint European Space Agency and NASA's Solar and Heliospheric Observatory.
The CME associated with a Sept. 10, 2014, X1.6 flare is visible in this image from the joint European Space Agency and NASA's Solar and Heliospheric Observatory.
Image Credit: 
ESA&NASA/SOHO
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An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014.
An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows light in the 131 Angstrom wavelength, which is typically colorized in teal.
Image Credit: 
NASA/SDO
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Join NASA Sept 22-26 for CME Week. Follow and ask questions at #CMEWeek on Twitter.
Join NASA Sept 22-26 for CME Week. Follow and ask questions at #CMEWeek on Twitter.
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Page Last Updated: September 18th, 2014
Page Editor: Holly Zell