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Latest Solar flare Stories

Image 1 - NASA Chief Technologist Praises Solar Sail Mission
2012-03-19 05:30:50

R Darrah for RedOrbit.com [ Watch the Video ] NASA chief technologist Mason Peck and Congressman Dana Rohrabacher (R-CA) met with executives and engineers at L´Garde Inc. on Thursday, March 15 to see the company´s progress on providing an in-space demonstration of a large, mission-capable solar sail. L´Garde was one of only a handful of companies to have been awarded a NASA Technology Demonstration Mission (TDM) contract last year.  The program calls for the...

Solar Storm Threat Appears To Have Passed
2012-03-09 12:26:43

[ Watch the Solar Flare in Action Here and Here ] Two recent Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) -- massive bursts of solar wind produced by the Sun -- appear to have caused little or no damage to electrical systems, according to scientists. The CMEs were caught by NASA as they took off from the Sun, traveling faster than 1,300 miles per second. The first wave hit yesterday morning, March 8. The second hit late last night into early this morning. Joseph Kunches, a scientist with the...

CMEs Heading Towards Earth
2012-03-07 15:15:46

[ Watch the Solar Flare in Action Here and Here ] NASA said on Wednesday that two Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) are now traveling faster than 1,300 miles per second, on track towards Earth. NASA's Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (STEREO) and the Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) caught the CMEs as they took-off from the sun. The space agency said the first CME, which is traveling at about 1,300 miles per second, will reach Earth on the morning of March 8. This CME...

New System To Forecast Space Weather
2012-03-05 08:04:05

A new system has been developed by British scientists that will forecast space weather in an effort to better protect satellites orbiting our planet from damaging solar storms. Led by researchers at the British Antarctic Survey (BAS), the SPACECAST project is expected to provide reliable web-based forecasts so that satellite operators will be able to take action to keep their navigational, communication, and scientific satellites from the radiation that solar storms produce. Researchers...

Curiosity, The Astronaut Stunt Double
2012-02-25 05:28:49

[ Watch the Video ] With a pair of bug-eyes swiveling on a stalk nearly 8 feet off the ground, the 6-wheeled, 1800-lb Mars rover Curiosity doesn´t look much like a human being.  Yet, right now, the mini-Cooper-sized rover is playing the role of stunt double for NASA astronauts. “Curiosity is riding to Mars in the belly of a spacecraft, where an astronaut would be,” explains Don Hassler of the Southwest Research Institute in Boulder, Colorado.  “This...

RHESSI Mission Celebrates Ten Years And Forty Thousand X-Ray Flares
2012-02-11 04:00:56

[ Watch the Video ] On February 5, 2002, NASA launched what was then called the High Energy Solar Spectroscopic Imager (HESSI) into orbit. Renamed within months as the Ramaty High Energy Solar Spectroscopic Imager (RHESSI) after Reuven Ramaty, a deceased NASA scientist who had long championed the mission, the spacecraft's job was to observe giant explosions on the sun called solar flares. During a solar flare, the gas soars to over 20 million degrees Fahrenheit, and emits X-rays that...

2012-02-08 11:30:00

WASHINGTON, Feb. 8, 2012 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- The giant black hole at the center of the Milky Way may be vaporizing and devouring asteroids, which could explain the frequent flares observed, according to astronomers using data from NASA's Chandra X-ray Observatory. (Logo: http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20081007/38461LOGO) For several years Chandra has detected X-ray flares about once a day from the supermassive black hole known as Sagittarius A*, or "Sgr A*" for short. The...

Sun Delivered Curveball Of Powerful Radiation At Earth
2012-02-02 04:32:26

A potent follow-up solar flare, which occurred Friday (Jan. 27, 2012), just days after the Sun launched the biggest coronal mass ejection (CME) seen in nearly a decade, delivered a powerful radiation punch to Earth's magnetic field despite the fact that it was aimed away from our planet. According to University of New Hampshire scientists currently studying and modeling various aspects of solar radiation, this was due to both the existing population of energetic particles launched by the...

NASA Captures Another Massive Solar Flare On January 27: Video
2012-01-30 10:35:37

[ Watch the Video ] The sun unleashed an X1.8 class flare that began at 1:12 PM ET on January 27, 2012 and peaked at 1:37. The flare immediately caused a strong radio blackout at low-latitudes, which was rated an R3 on NOAA's scale from R1-5. The blackout soon subsided to a minor R1 storm. Models from NASA's Goddard Space Weather Center predict that the CME is traveling at over 1500 miles per second. It does not initially appear to be Earth-directed, but Earth may get a glancing blow....

2012-01-30 07:20:00

TRUCKEE, Calif., Jan. 30, 2012 /PRNewswire/ -- Solar flares are all over the news as we head towards the next "solar maximum" in 2012/2013. With recent brilliant displays of northern lights, scientists are concerned that this next solar maximum could deal a devastating blow to our electronic power grid and communications systems. Periods of intense solar activity occur once every eleven years when our sun's magnetic poles flip and the sun sends powerful waves of charged particles hurtling...


Latest Solar flare Reference Libraries

6_b41df2b5116346e900bfb8a97da136be2
2004-10-19 04:45:42

Photosphere -- The photosphere of an astronomical object is the region at which the optical depth becomes one. In other words, the photosphere is the place where an object stops being transparent. It is typically used to describe the Sun or another star. Because stars are large balls of gas, they have no solid surface. However, there is a depth at which the gas stops being transparent to photons, and this depth provides a visual surface to the star. The Sun's photosphere has a...

6_9f9676753bcc717a861f93bfceb7d2f82
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Corona -- The corona is the luminous "atmosphere" of the Sun extending millions of kilometers into space, most easily seen during a total solar eclipse. An interesting feature of the corona is the fact that it is much hotter than the visible "surface" of the Sun; the photosphere is approximately 6000°C compared to the corona at over one million °C. The corona is much less dense than the photosphere, however, and so produces less light. The exact mechanism by which the corona is...

6_4d16b7c37ad5d88de63c76846431dbc72
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Chromosphere -- The chromosphere (literally, "color sphere") is a thin layer of the Sun's atmosphere just above the photosphere, roughly 10,000 kilometers deep. The chromosphere is more visually transparent than the photosphere. The most common solar feature within the chromosphere are spicules, long thin fingers of luminous gas which appear like the blades of a huge field of fiery grass growing upwards from the photosphere below. Spicules rise to the top of the chromosphere and then sink...

4_d3a853c28ff70a676427cf8e42fced4f2
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Solar Wind -- Solar wind, a stream of particles (mostly high-energy protons ~ 500 Kev) that is continually ejected from the surface of the Sun. The composition of this plasma is identical to the Sun's corona, 73% hydrogen and 25% helium with the remainder as trace impurities, and is ionized. Near Earth, the velocity of the solar wind varies from 200km/s-889km/s. The average is 450 km/s. Approximately 3000 tons of material is lost from the Sun every hour as solar wind. Since solar...

4_641fa07d2f22a90aec48fb5581337d772
2004-10-19 04:45:41

Solar Maximum -- The Sun, a roiling ball of plasma, occupies its place in space approximately 93 million miles from Earth. Though it seems simple to inhabitants of this planet -- the Sun shines, giving light and heat -- the processes occurring in the Sun are so complex that many scientists devote their careers to just one aspect of solar activity. Changes in the activity of the Sun particularly engage solar scientists. Whether fluctuations in the solar magnetic field, expulsions of...

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