According to what was reported by a team of astronomers, a sunspot known as AR2987, which was apparently dead, exploded on Monday, April 11, causing the massive expulsion of solar material towards Earth.
The explosion also released a large amount of energy in the form of radiation, leading to a coronal mass ejection. According to the researchers, the two events could lead to more intense Northern Lights in Earth’s upper atmosphere. According to SpaceWeather, this material is expected to reach Earth on April 14.
Sunspots correspond to dark regions on the surface of the Sun. They are caused by an intense magnetic flux that comes from the interior of the star, in addition, they are temporary and can last from hours to months.
“Sunspots can sometimes ‘reset’, causing stronger magnetism to appear later (days, weeks) in the same region, as if there is a weakness in the convection zone or an unstable region. subsurface that was particularly good at generating magnetic fields below,” says solar physicist Philip Judge in a Article from Live Science.
AR2987 launched a class C solar flare. According to the researchers, these types of flares are quite common and rarely directly impact our planet. In this case, the event released on Monday could cause minor impacts to satellite operations and weak fluctuations in the power grid.