Monday 2 August 2010

CME aimed at Earth is reporting that the Sun has got a little bit busier recently.  After months of suspiciously quiet behaviour we've had a "complex global eruption".  A sunspot has suddenly flared up, and a filament of material has erupted from the surface.  The two events occurred together, the suggestion being that they are both symptoms of a single event.  The flare and the filiament appear to be separated on the surface by about 45 degrees, meaning it's an event covering a substantial proportion of the Sun's surface.

To top it all the SOHO satellite has filmed a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) aimed squarely at Earth.  A CME is basically a lump of Sun-stuff, a very thin, very hot plasma, being flung out from the Sun at very high speed indeed.  This one should reach us sometime on the evening of the 3rd of August.

Don't Panic.

This is a relatively small CME, and will probably just give those of us in the northern part of the globe some rather pretty aurora.  Maybe more, it's not inconceivable that there will be a little disruption in communications if satellites have to shut down to protect themselves, but please don't go believing any apocalyptic 2012 nonsense you hear.

Anyway, we've all got a Zombie Plan, haven't we? ;)

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