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NASA Issues Warning on Unprecedented X6.3 Solar Flare, Posing Threat to Communication Systems

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NASA Issues Warning on Unprecedented X6.3 Solar Flare, Posing Threat to Communication Systems

(CTN News) – A stern warning has been issued by the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) in response to the intense solar flares that substantially threaten communication systems in space and on Earth.

On February 22, 2024, at 5:34 p.m. Eastern Standard Time (EST), the aerospace agency recorded a powerful flare that reached its peak and measured an astounding X6.3 on the solar activity scale.

27th Most Powerful Solar Flare in Recorded History

Solar flares, categorised into five categories ranging from A to X, with X-class flares being the most severe, can potentially interrupt various communication systems. This latest incident ranks as the 27th most powerful flare in the history of recorded flares, making it the largest flare that has been documented that has occurred since 2017.

In the days leading up to this very powerful X6.3 event, there were several significant flares, including an X1.8 on Wednesday and an X1.7 earlier on Thursday.

nasa solar

When the flare occurred, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) of the United States warned that such phenomena could cause operators of high-frequency radios to experience a brief degradation of their signal or even a full loss of their signal. This was especially true on the side of the planet exposed to sunlight.

However, the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) emphasised the potential interruption to radar and GPS systems whilst assuring the public that these events did not constitute a serious threat to general safety.

Solar flares release dangerous radiation, threatening astronauts’ health and safety aboard the International Space Station (ISS) and the Tiangong space station in China. As a result, these astronauts are on high alert.

Seven International Space Station crew members and the three astronauts aboard Tiangong have been instructed to maintain vigilance as the solar activity continues.

However, even though the flares are occurring during Sun Cycle 25, which started in 2019 and is expected to peak around 2025, this most recent X6.3 flare is a noteworthy event during this cycle. It can potentially establish a precedent for additional activity in the future.

Arsi Mughal is a staff writer at CTN News, delivering insightful and engaging content on a wide range of topics. With a knack for clear and concise writing, he crafts articles that resonate with readers. Arsi's pieces are well-researched, informative, and presented in a straightforward manner, making complex subjects accessible to a broad audience. His writing style strikes the perfect balance between professionalism and casual approachability, ensuring an enjoyable reading experience.

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