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Business News/ Science / News/  Solar storm set to strike Earth today: From Internet disruption to GPS signals, what to expect?
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Solar storm set to strike Earth today: From Internet disruption to GPS signals, what to expect?

NASA and Space Weather Prediction Center experts have issued a warning about an upcoming solar storm projected that is slated to strike Earth today, November 30.

Solar storms: Four CMEs are heading for Earth following a series of explosions on the sun this week, with the biggest CME capable of sparking strong geomagnetic storms and mid-latitude auroras. (NASA)Premium
Solar storms: Four CMEs are heading for Earth following a series of explosions on the sun this week, with the biggest CME capable of sparking strong geomagnetic storms and mid-latitude auroras. (NASA)

NASA and Space Weather Prediction Center Scientists have issued a warning about an upcoming solar storm that is slated to strike Earth today, November 30. 

The National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s (NOAA) Space Weather Prediction Center issued a geomagnetic storm watch alert for December 1 that is expected to disrupt radio and GPS signals. The solar storm, “cannibal CMEs" would strike the Earth on November 30 night and conclude by December 1 early morning. 

Also read: NASA warns of solar storm; Here's how it will impact Earth

The strike is expected to occur following a powerful M9.8-class solar flare erupted that from the sun on November 29 at 2:50 p.m. EST (1950 GMT), reported space.com. This flare ejected a plasma eruption known as a coronal mass ejection (CME) toward Earth and is expected to strike Earth today.

NASA's findings also suggest that the solar storm could result in vivid auroras in the nighttime sky along with radio blackouts that also occurred earlier this week. NASA warned that the CME is expected to show up a 15-hour-long G2-class solar flare.

What is coronal mass ejection? 

Coronal mass ejection consists of waves emitted from the sun that carry highly charged ions that are capable of damaging satellites and communication systems on Earth. These CME ejections possess the potential to blast Earth’s magnetosphere with solar energy and excite different gasses like oxygen and nitrogen, reported MPR News.

 

Spaceweather.com stated, “Three and perhaps four CMEs are heading for Earth following a series of explosions on the sun this week. Estimated time of arrival: Nov. 30th and Dec. 1st. The biggest of the CMEs, launched on Nov. 28th, could sweep up some of the earlier, lesser ones, forming a Cannibal CME capable of sparking strong G3-class geomagnetic storms with mid-latitude auroras."

Also read: NASA predicts terrifying double solar storms to strike the Earth today. All you need to know

The SOHO coronagraph video shows a halo cloud expanding towards the Earth's and moving at over 1.8 million mph.

Dr. Tamitha Skov, a space weather scientist, stated that the solar storm is directed towards Earth's south. She further mentioned that during this event, auroras will illuminate the sky due to the intense interaction of CMEs with the thermosphere layer of the atmosphere, where ions are free to move. 

Also read: Govt to act against solar power developers flouting local sourcing norms

She tweeted, “The dynamics of the Earth's magnetic shield ensures the impact is global. The asymmetry of the impact does make minor differences in some processes that occur, mostly at the front edge of Earth's shield. By far the largest effects will be at high latitudes on the nightside."

Also read: India’s solar module manufacturing capacity may jump over 60% by 2025: Icra

While this is a small solar storm, large-scale solar storms have the potential to cause Internet disruptions and cause power outages in various regions. 

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Published: 30 Nov 2023, 08:41 AM IST
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