Solar Flare Captured in Stunning NASA Video
A NASA video released this week features striking footage of a mid-level solar flare recently captured by the space agency’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.
Solar flares are large bursts of radiation that manifest themselves as a moment of sudden brightness over the sun’s surface.
The video highlights an M-class flare with an intensity level of 6.5 — much stronger than an M1 flare, the weakest of the group. The X-class, which is the most intense flare, is 10 times more powerful than the M-Class.
No one on Earth can be physically affected by solar flares, as their emissions cannot pass through Earth’s atmosphere. The only thing we’d have to worry about is communication: If a flare is intense enough, it can impact the layer of the atmosphere in which GPS and communications signals exist.
Peaking at 10:05 a.m. ET on Wednesday, the flare is shown “in a blend of two wavelengths of extreme ultraviolet light: 131 Angstroms and 171 Angstroms,” according to NASA. The wavelengths are colorized in yellow and red at different points during the video.
Check out the breathtaking sequence in the clip, above.