If we don't harden the grids and nuclear power plants against electromagnetic forces, a solar flare could eventually cause widespread nuclear disasters which make Fukushima look tame....
"The large cloud of particles mushroomed up and fell back down looking as if it covered an area of almost half the solar surface," it said in a statement.
NASA said the coronal mass ejection (CME) should deliver a "glancing blow" to Earth's magnetic field during the late hours of June 8th or June 9th.
High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras when the CME arrives.
The Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) observed the flare's peak at 1:41a.m. ET (0641 UT). SDO recorded these images in extreme ultraviolet light that show a very large eruption of cool gas.
Scientists say it is somewhat unique because at many places in the eruption there seems to be even cooler material -- at temperatures less than 80,000 K.
When viewed in Solar and Heliospheric Observatory's (SOHO) coronagraphs, the event shows bright plasma and high-energy particles roaring from the Sun. This not-squarely Earth-directed CME is moving at 1400 km/s according to NASA models.
The minor radiation storm and a spectacular CME was observed from sunspot complex 1226-1227.