The blast from the surface of the Sun occurred on March 8 with a barrage of solar particles being spewed into deep space. As a result, Earth could be hit with solar storms between March 11 and March 13. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory filmed the sun particles being hurled into deep space, and the mesmerising video shows a blast of green and blue originating from the sunspot, called AR2734.
Website Space Weather said: “For such a small sunspot, AR2734 is surprisingly active. On March 10, the sunspot’s magnetic field became unstable and erupted for the second time in as many days.
“NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory caught the sunspot hurling a dark filament of magnetism into space.
“NOAA analysts have examined the trajectory of the filament and surrounding ejecta.
“They say it is unlikely to hit Earth. Nevertheless, stormy space weather is likely on March 11-13 as Earth passes close to coronal mass ejections (CMEs) ejected from sunspot AR2734 on March 8.
“AR2734 is now turning away from Earth, so future eruptions, if any, will probably not be geoeffective.”
While this solar storm is only considered ‘minor’, the consequences could be far more serious than the appearance of the northern or southern Lights.
For the most part, the Earth’s magnetic field protects humans from the barrage of radiation, but solar storms can affect satellite-based technology.
Solar winds can heat the Earth’s outer atmosphere, causing it to expand.
This can affect satellites in orbit, potentially leading to a lack of GPS navigation, mobile phone signal and satellite TV services, such as Sky.
Additionally, a surge of particles can lead to high currents in the magnetosphere, which can lead to higher than normal electricity in power lines, resulting in electrical transformers and power stations blow outs and a loss of power.
The higher amounts of radiation also leave people vulnerable to skin cancer, say experts.