Just another manic sun-day.
A solar explosion that occurred Sunday could graze Earth Thursday, potentially disrupting our planet’s magnetic field.
“A slow-moving CME [or coronal mass ejection] that left the sun on June 26th could pass close to Earth today,” read an advisory on SpaceWeather.com. The solar phenomenon, whose origins are currently unknown, was captured by the European Space Agency using a tool it calls CACTus, or Computer Aided CME Tracking, the tech blog BGR reported.
A CME occurs when a large amount of plasma is expelled from the sun’s outer layer, called the corona. The Earth uses its magnetic field to repel these mass particle eruptions, like an intergalactic missile flare.
Even with the CME’s predicted near miss of Earth, it could “could disturb our planet’s magnetic field and spark high latitude auroras,” according to SpaceWeather.com. “Bright displays are unlikely, but the nearly New Moon will allow long photographic exposures to capture faint lights.”
While they might sound apocalyptic, auroras are basically light shows in the sky, the most famous example of which are the Northern Lights, the Sun reported. These solar firework displays are caused when solar wind bombards Earth’s magnetic field, creating eye-popping green and blue displays in the sky.
If a solar event does actually manage to breach our magnetosphere, it could cause everything from power grid problems to radio blackouts. Earlier this month, a huge sunspot, named AR3038, doubled in size and pointed at Earth. This raised alarms that it could spark a major solar flare with the potential to cause a mass radio blackout.
In more positive solar news, a NASA satellite captured the moment the moon passed in front of the sun on Wednesday, producing a partial solar eclipse that could be seen only from space, SpaceWeather.com reported. The transit lasted for about 35 minutes, and at its peak, the moon obscured around 67% of the sun’s surface.
This story originally Appeared on Nypost