The phenomenon of solar flares is nothing new. We are already well aware of the 11 year solar cycle that sees this fiery cosmic show ebb and flow and this has been going on for millions of years now.
Currently, we are heading towards another solar maximum; a period that sees a spike up in the solar flare and sunspot activity. And NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory has just captured what it dubs as a graceful solar eruption.
While the solar flare activity looks simply stunning from Earth, these violent eruptions release UV radiations that can be catastrophic, if it were not for the protection offered by Earth’s atmosphere.
At their peak, solar flares have been known to cause mild disturbances in our GPS and communication systems.
Spewing out high energy particles along with UV radiation far into the outer edge of the solar system, increase in solar flares also directly affects the phenomenon of the Northern Lights.
The one capture in the video here is a mid-level flare that is called an M6.5 flare by NASA. X-Class flares are considered as the flares with the highest intensity and are a far rarer phenomenon.
UV light with 304 Angstroms is colorized in yellow while the 171 Angstrom radiations are represented in red. While some believe a large solar flare could roast all life on earth one day, most astrophysicists believe that this is unlikely any time soon.