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The Sun Emits a Mid-level Flare and CME

The sun emitted a mid-level flare, peaking at 3:16 a.m. EDT on April 11, 2013.

Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation. Harmful radiation from a flare cannot pass through Earth's atmosphere to physically affect humans on the ground, however -- when intense enough -- they can disturb the atmosphere in the layer where GPS and communications signals travel. This disrupts the radio signals for as long as the flare is ongoing, anywhere from minutes to hours.

This flare is classified as an M6.5 flare, some ten times less powerful than the strongest flares, which are labeled X-class flares. M-class flares are the weakest flares that can still cause some space weather effects near Earth. This flare produced a radio blackout that has since subsided. The blackout was categorized as an R2 on a scale between R1 and R5 on NOAA's space weather scales.

This is the strongest flare seen so far in 2013. Increased numbers of flares are quite common at the moment, since the sun's normal 11-year activity cycle is ramping up toward solar maximum, which is expected in late 2013. Humans have tracked this solar cycle continuously since it was discovered, and it is normal for there to be many flares a day during the sun's peak activity.

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More information on this topic available at:
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sunearth/news/News031513-m6flare.html

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013.  This image shows a combination of light in wavelengths of 131 and 171 Angstroms. Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO    NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013. This image shows a combination of light in wavelengths of 131 and 171 Angstroms.

Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO

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NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013.  This image shows a combination of light in wavelengths of 131 and 171 Angstroms.  Cropped to flare region. Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO    NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013. This image shows a combination of light in wavelengths of 131 and 171 Angstroms. Cropped to flare region.

Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO

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The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this series of images of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 over the course of 11:48 p.m. EDT April 10, to 5:48 EDT April 11.   Labeled. Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC    The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this series of images of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 over the course of 11:48 p.m. EDT April 10, to 5:48 EDT April 11. Labeled.

Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC
Duration: 15.5 seconds
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The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this series of images of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 over the course of 3:48 EDT to 4:36 EDT.  Mars can be seen on the left. Labeled. Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC    The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this series of images of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 over the course of 3:48 EDT to 4:36 EDT. Mars can be seen on the left. Labeled.

Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC

Available formats:
  1500 x 1024     JPEG       1 MB


The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this series of images of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 over the course of 3:48 EDT to 4:36 EDT.  Mars can be seen on the left. Unlabeled. Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC    The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this series of images of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 over the course of 3:48 EDT to 4:36 EDT. Mars can be seen on the left. Unlabeled.

Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC

Available formats:
  1500 x 1024     JPEG       1 MB


The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this image of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 at course of 3:48 EDT to 4:54 EDT.  Venus and Mars can be seen on the left. Labeled. Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC    The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this image of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 at course of 3:48 EDT to 4:54 EDT. Venus and Mars can be seen on the left. Labeled.

Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC

Available formats:
  1024 x 1024     JPEG       1 MB


The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this image of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 at course of 3:48 EDT to 4:54 EDT.  Venus and Mars can be seen on the left. Labeled. Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC    The joint ESA/NASA Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured this image of a coronal mass ejection (CME) on the morning of April 11, 2013 at course of 3:48 EDT to 4:54 EDT. Venus and Mars can be seen on the left. Labeled.

Credit: SOHO/ESA & NASA/GSFC

Available formats:
  1024 x 1024     JPEG       1 MB


NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013.  This image shows light at a wavelength of 131  Angstroms. Credit: NASA/SDO    NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013. This image shows light at a wavelength of 131 Angstroms.

Credit: NASA/SDO

Available formats:
  4096 x 4096     JPEG       6 MB


NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013.  This image shows light at a wavelength of 171  Angstroms. Credit: NASA/SDO    NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this image of an M6.5 class flare at 3:16 EDT on April 11, 2013. This image shows light at a wavelength of 171 Angstroms.

Credit: NASA/SDO

Available formats:
  4096 x 4096     JPEG       2 MB

Short URL to This Page:http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/goto?11246
Animation Number:11246
Completed:2013-04-11
Producer:Scott Wiessinger (USRA)
Writer:Karen Fox (ASI)
Platforms/Sensors/Data Sets:SDO
 SDO/AIA/171 Filter
 SDO/AIA/131 Filter
 SOHO/Large Angle Spectrometric COronagraph (LASCO)/C2
 SOHO/Large Angle Spectrometric COronagraph (LASCO)/C3
 SOHO
Series:Heliophysics Breaking News
Goddard TV Tape:G2013-021 -- 2013 Heliophysics Breaking News
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center
 
Keywords:
SVS >> CME
SVS >> Coronal Mass Ejection
SVS >> HDTV
SVS >> SOHO
SVS >> Solar Flare
SVS >> Solar Ultraviolet
SVS >> Sun
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Sun-earth Interactions
SVS >> Space Weather
SVS >> SDO
SVS >> Solar Dynamics Observatory
SVS >> Heliophysics
 
 


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Many of our multimedia items use the GCMD keywords. These keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation:
Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version 8.0.0.0.0

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