September 10, 2014 X1.6 flare

  • Released Thursday, September 11th, 2014
  • Updated Wednesday, May 3rd, 2023 at 1:50PM
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The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 1:48 p.m. EDT on Sept. 10, 2014. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured images of the event. 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 flare is classified as an X1.6 class flare. "X-class" denotes the most intense flares, while the number provides more information about its strength. An X2 is twice as intense as an X1, an X3 is three times as intense, etc.

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows light in the 131 angstrom wavelength, which is typically colorized in teal.Credit: NASA/SDO

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows light in the 131 angstrom wavelength, which is typically colorized in teal.

Credit: NASA/SDO

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows a blend of light from the 171 and 304 angstrom wavelengths.Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows a blend of light from the 171 and 304 angstrom wavelengths.

Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows a blend of light from the 171 and 304 angstrom wavelengths.Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO

An X1.6 class solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 10, 2014. This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory and shows a blend of light from the 171 and 304 angstrom wavelengths.

Credit: NASA/GSFC/SDO

The CME associated with the September 10, 2014 X1.6 flare is visible in this image from the SOHO spacecraft's LASCO C3 coronagraph.Credit: ESA/NASA/SOHO

The CME associated with the September 10, 2014 X1.6 flare is visible in this image from the SOHO spacecraft's LASCO C3 coronagraph.

Credit: ESA/NASA/SOHO

This movie shows IRIS imagery focused in on material at around 60,000 Kelvin (107,500 F), which highlights a low level of the sun's atmosphere, called the transition region.

IRIS clearly shows a dark sunspot in the upper right, a magnetically complex region observed on the sun's surface. As the flare begins, crisp bright lines show up moving across the IRIS data, showing where material begins to be heated with the onset of the flare.

Credit: NASA/LMSAL

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NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center. However, individual items should be credited as indicated above.


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  • 2014 Heliophysics Breaking News (ID: 2014015)
    Tuesday, December 30, 2014 at 5:00AM
    Produced by - Robert Crippen