‘Major’ Solar Flare Storm Expected This Weekend

Although a solar flare storm that’s expected this weekend likely won’t cause harm to any people, you might want to wear a hat just in case. NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center on Thursday issued a G4 geomagnetic storm watch, saying two separate regions of the sun are expected to produce “multiple” X1-level solar flares and coronal mass ejections, which will merge and arrive on Earth late Friday. Bill Murtagh, a program coordinator for the SWPC, describes coronal mass ejections as “essentially the Sun shooting a magnet out into space.” While the phrase “geomagnetic storm” may sound a bit daunting, it’s actually responsible for Earth’s most famous light show, the Aurora Borealis. Because of the increased activity this weekend, the Northern Lights should be visible to a large swatch of the world that can’t normally see it, NASA reports. What’s the most amazing thing you’ve seen in the sky?

NASA/GSFC/Solar Dynamics Observatory/Handout via REUTERS

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