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Sun Blasts Another CME At Earth and Mars

Soulskill posted more than 2 years ago | from the careful-you-could-put-an-eye-out dept.

Space 66

astroengine writes "On Friday, the sun hurled a coronal mass ejection (CME) at our planet that sparked a strong geomagnetic storm and beautiful aurorae at high latitudes. Late on Sunday (EST), the sun unleashed yet another Earth-bound CME after an M9 flare erupted over a particularly active sunspot region — the CME is expected to hit Earth on Tuesday and Mars on Wednesday. This series of flares and CMEs have ignited the strongest period of solar storms since 2005, according to an NOAA space weather advisory."

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66 comments

Correction (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801033)

I think you mean "Oracle Blasts Another CME At Earth and Mars"

Re:Correction (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801121)

Correction to your correction:

I blasted another cum-shot all over your your sister's face and tits.

Re:Correction (0)

anagama (611277) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801815)

Not offtopic -- whoever modded that offtopic needs to go to the dump and dig up a sense of humor, because even a trashed used up one would be better than what they've got.

Can we have our Articles back please? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38802359)

THE Sun...

Re:Can we have our Articles back please? (1)

LynnwoodRooster (966895) | more than 2 years ago | (#38809481)

THE Sun...

Correct - the object in the sky with less mass than Larry's ego.

Ra is pissed (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801085)

Somebody better sacrifice a goat or some shit

Re:Ra is pissed (3, Funny)

Lotana (842533) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802601)

Why is it always a goat?

I am curious about the origin of the sacrificial goat expression. Whenever there is any talk of non-human sacrifice it is this particular animal that is immediately brought up. Is it because goats are more commonly available? Why not cows? If I remember correctly, the bible mentions male sheep as the sacrifices used. So where did the goat originate from?

I know that if I was a god, I would prefer something more exotic and harder to obtain in order for my followers to prove their devotion. Farm animals and humans are so easily obtained that it would be boring and routine. For my sacrifices I would require something rare like an albino tiger or dangerous to obtain like young, fully grown elephant. My blessings are not cheap!

Re:Ra is pissed (4, Informative)

Canazza (1428553) | more than 2 years ago | (#38803189)

Leviticus 16:15 "He shall then slaughter the goat for the sin offering for the people"
and Leviticus 16:20-22 (Origin of the "Scape goat")

Re:Ra is pissed (1)

JoeMerchant (803320) | more than 2 years ago | (#38803713)

Why is it always a goat?

I am curious about the origin of the sacrificial goat expression. Whenever there is any talk of non-human sacrifice it is this particular animal that is immediately brought up. Is it because goats are more commonly available? Why not cows? If I remember correctly, the bible mentions male sheep as the sacrifices used. So where did the goat originate from?

I know that if I was a god, I would prefer something more exotic and harder to obtain in order for my followers to prove their devotion. Farm animals and humans are so easily obtained that it would be boring and routine. For my sacrifices I would require something rare like an albino tiger or dangerous to obtain like young, fully grown elephant. My blessings are not cheap!

Today we just donate money... goats were handy.

Re:Ra is pissed (1)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 2 years ago | (#38804793)

How about your one and only son - a one of a kind human God hybrid the only one to ever be born of a virgin - would that be rare enough? He's fully your son, so everyone trying to kill him could be subject to either his or your wrath in an second.

Re:Ra is pissed (1)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38805963)

I know that if I was a god, I would prefer something more exotic and harder to obtain in order for my followers to prove their devotion.

If I were a god why would I need them to prove their devotion? I should already know! Unless, of course, there's something about being a god that I don't understand (and understanding that would be harder than a housefly understanding me).

Re:Ra is pissed (1)

Bill, Shooter of Bul (629286) | more than 2 years ago | (#38810257)

Not every god, is all powerful like the Judeo-Christian God. The greek/romans/norse all had domain over some part of the world, but not everything. If I were the sun god, I'd want people to devote themselves to me, rather than the stupid rain god, tree god, or god of ugly t-shirts.

10m HF in mars!!! (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801099)

ham radio rocks!

First Arctic fresh water, now this (0, Offtopic)

Gothmolly (148874) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801103)

What I want to know is how the increase in Arctic freshwater caused a CME. After all, it did come first. That's how it works, right?

Re:First Arctic fresh water, now this (1, Insightful)

hcs_$reboot (1536101) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801579)

Only on Slashdot does an AC get modded Informative for pointing out that the LHC is in Europe.

Well, at least American know roughly where is Europe. Imagine, if it would have pointed out that the LHC is at the frontier France+Swiss...
--
I solely acknowledge that this post smells like "off topic"

Strongest period of storms... (5, Funny)

pie21 (2125264) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801105)

This series of flares and CMEs have ignited the strongest period of solar storms since 2005, according to an NOAA space weather advisory.

Sounds like pretty clear evidence of solar warming to me.

They rank these storms (3, Informative)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801279)

They have a designated ranking system for CME/EMP effects on earth. It goes from C or M all the way up to X5 I believe.

Re:They rank these storms (4, Funny)

similar_name (1164087) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801619)

It goes from C or M all the way up to X5

Is that better than 11?

Re:They rank these storms (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38804819)

It goes from C or M all the way up to X5

Is that better than 11?

Bazinga!

Re:They rank these storms (5, Informative)

oneiros27 (46144) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801909)

'ranking system for CME/EMP effects' ... 'all the way up to X5'?

Wow. Well, what you're talking about is the 'Flare Class' [spaceweather.com] which only classifies the amount of x-ray energy given off by a flare. It's a log scale, so M is 10x as large as a C, and X is 10x as large as an M. Of course, there's no cap on it, and there have been X20 flares recorded. Of course, the sensors saturate, and as we're only really dealing with one significant figure and a magnitude, I don't know how much precision they have at those higher values.

To make things even more fun, there's also a flare 'importance' value [spaceweather.com] , which is based on the energy and size of the flaring region in the optical (visible) spectrum.

But neither of these classifications have to do with CMEs, and particularly not their affects at earth. For that, you'd need to look at the solar wind folks, who are obsessed with things like 'Bz' (z-component of the magnetic field', ie, how is it oriented relative to the earth's magnetic field?) [swri.edu] and radio bursts [nasa.gov] .

The closest thing that I can think of to what you describe would be a catalog of ICMEs [ucla.edu] (Interplanetary CMEs), but even those, if you look at the catalog, are just raw numbers, no sort of ranking to it. (the column with 'A' and 'B' in it are which of the two STEREO spacecraft [nasa.gov] saw the event, 'Ahead' or 'Behind')

Disclaimer : I'm not a solar physicist, but I work in a solar data archive, and have done work trying to normalize solar event catalogs.

Re:They rank these storms (1)

Hadlock (143607) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801959)

Ah, fantastic, this was the response I was hoping for, and the reason I visit Slashdot. Any chance you could convert this post in to a (well linked) Wikipedia Article? I've dug around for similar information before, but I think the reason why articles always are so vauge about the CME's classifications are that reporters have so little information to research from, in particular Wikipedia.

Re:They rank these storms (1)

oneiros27 (46144) | more than 2 years ago | (#38804141)

I think you missed the key point -- there's no fixed scale for CME, so why would you write an article on the lack of something?

CMEs and flares are *not* the same thing -- the CME is an ejection of plasma from the sun, while a flare is energy only. You also have what are called 'SEP events' [nasa.gov] (Solar Energetic Particles), where they're measuring highly energetic particles in situ (in place vs. remote sensing like from telesopes) ... and I probably shouldn't say that there's no CME classification ... there are a few classifications that are based on the shape, which is a factor of the location of the observer. You'll often see CME catalogs list the CPA (central position angle, ie, what direction the CME left the sun) as 'halo', which just means that it came out of all sides from the point of view of that observation.

If you want more info, try asking at The Sun Today [thesuntoday.org] , which is run by an actual solar physicist. (disclaimer: it's one of my co-workers)

ps. the maximum flare class mistake has even been made by the people doing EPO (education & public outreach) for SDO [nasa.gov] ... I had to e-mail around after a facebook post said that the scale went up to X9 ... so even the 'professionals' (in this case, educators, not scientists) don't know the system that well.

Re:They rank these storms (2)

mcgrew (92797) | more than 2 years ago | (#38809637)

Any chance you could convert this post in to a (well linked) Wikipedia Article?

Why, so one of the on-staff editors can delete it or render it meaningless? Attempting to edit wikipedia is a fool's errand.

And I stand corrected ... (1)

oneiros27 (46144) | more than 2 years ago | (#38809893)

It seems that NOAA started classifying events from their Space Weather Prediction Center last cycle, but it's not considered of 'science quality' like the flare classifications, so the community I deal with doesn't care about them.

There are three scales, all from 1 to 5, prefixed by G for Geomagnetic Storms [noaa.gov] , S for Solar Radiation [noaa.gov] , and R for Radio Blackouts [noaa.gov] .

So, high R (eg, R4) would be 'GPS doesn't work', S would be 'could kill people in space' (or satellites), and G would be the stuff that could induce current into electrical systems.

So, to summarize:

  • C, M, X : x-ray flare energy level (with numbers 1 to 9.9 for C&M, but no limit on X)
  • F, N, B : h-alpha flare 'importance' (numbers going from 0 to 4)
  • G, S, R : predicted impact at Earth (numbers 1 to 5)

And NOAA still has 17 letters left to come up with more confusing scales.

Re:Strongest period of storms... (1)

youn (1516637) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801409)

or mega-global warming.... that goes beyond planet earth :)

Re:Strongest period of storms... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38803197)

In fact, Mars was warming at the same time earth was [nationalgeographic.com] .

Good luck getting the mass media to even ask the question. No taxes can be extracted from the truth.

No-one told the Sun did they. (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801135)

Flares are soooo 1970s

Somebody send the sun antidepressants :) (-1)

youn (1516637) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801179)

it looks it is getting all red and pissed off :p

Re:Somebody send the sun antidepressants :) (1)

macraig (621737) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801267)

Ummm, don't you mean anti-psychotics or muscle relaxants? I don't think depression causes road rage. Know your pharma, dude!

Re:Somebody send the sun antidepressants :) (1)

Neil Boekend (1854906) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802185)

We need to dump the world's supply of weed into it to calm it a bit.

Re:Somebody send the sun antidepressants :) (1)

macraig (621737) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802467)

Uh-oh, we're gonna live to regret slashing all those pot farms in the national forests!

Re:Somebody send the sun antidepressants :) (1)

Neil Boekend (1854906) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802553)

This is the Rastafari age! After they save the world, nobody is going to complain. The benefits already look good, so they'll gather folowers by the millions.

Re:Somebody send the sun antidepressants :) (1)

macraig (621737) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802647)

Except... nobody will know they saved the world, because somebody else will be taking the credit for it.

Re:Somebody send the sun antidepressants :) (2)

K. S. Kyosuke (729550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38804537)

Ummm, don't you mean anti-psychotics or muscle relaxants? I don't think depression causes road rage. Know your pharma, dude!

Whatever you prescribe to cure the Sun's mania, don't prescribe lithium, it won't work the way you probably expect. :)

I thought... (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801195)

They were bought up by Oracle already!

Not Surprising (3, Funny)

wbr1 (2538558) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801213)

It's 2012 baby. The end is nigh!

Re:Not Surprising (1)

Robert Zenz (1680268) | more than 2 years ago | (#38803361)

It would suck if the world would end this year...not because then we'll all die or something like that...but because the last thing we'd hear is a bunch of dumbasses screaming "WE WERE RIGHT!".

Re:Not Surprising (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38805021)

that is how they make these headlines out to be, and i very much dislike the sensationalist headlines. yes, its cool, i like the warning of the aurora so i could see them, however, unless this is satelite-smashing, telegraph powering levels, it doesnt need to be labeled as "sun blasts...."

Sun? (1, Funny)

singingjim1 (1070652) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801217)

Microsystems? It's flaring back up again? Nice! But I thought is was the Blade, not the Flare. Cool, new product!

Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (5, Interesting)

Terminaldogma (765487) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801221)

I keep hearing how CMEs can cause interference with electronics such as GPS, satellites, etc., but does anyone have an example where one caused noticeable impact? I fully believe the theory, I'm just wondering if there's an example of it being put into practice.

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (5, Informative)

uptownguy (215934) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801255)

but does anyone have an example where one caused noticeable impact?

You mean noticeable like this [wikipedia.org] or perhaps like this [wikipedia.org] ?

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (1)

CRC'99 (96526) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801623)

I wonder how this will affect radio propagation... From the brief bits that I learnt many years ago, a charged atmosphere reflects HF radio much better making low powered communications across the globe possible.

Someone who understands more about this than I do able to enlighten me a little?

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (2)

Mal-2 (675116) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802559)

Speaking with a HAM (I currently live with one), he said even the smaller flare from a couple days ago was creating highly unusual conditions that made DXing [wikipedia.org] far easier in the 6 meter band than is ordinarily the case. Guys with modest 100 watt transmitters in California were being heard in New Zealand, and vice versa. If you've ever wanted to add countries to your DX contact list, this might be just the time to do it!

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (1)

s122604 (1018036) | more than 2 years ago | (#38804233)

100 watts? When the ionosphere is going good you don't even need that much..

I've talked NY to Arizona on a crappy 20w ssb rig on antenna that was just a mag mount CB antenna that I didn't even bother to retune for 10 meters.

The guys doing modes like PSK31 and CW can talk around the world on a couple D cell batteries.

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (1)

BlackPignouf (1017012) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802719)

Aurorae were seen around the world, most notably over the Caribbean; also noteworthy were those over the Rocky Mountains that were so bright that their glow awoke gold miners, who began preparing breakfast because they thought it was morning.

Holy crap. I'd love to see Aurorae without having to fly to Canada/Norway in winter.

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (1)

XrayJunkie (2437814) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802913)

TY for the info. Solar storm of 1859 - guess they had no probs with the GPS ;-)

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (1)

History's Coming To (1059484) | more than 2 years ago | (#38803739)

Nope, but the telegraph system went down. If you've not heard of the telegraph it was a long-range communication system which relied on long thin bits of wire, sort of like a series of tubes ;)

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (1)

ruheling (570438) | more than 2 years ago | (#38807333)

Plus, the National Research Council has a long and detailed report on Severe Space Weather Events. http://www.nap.edu/catalog/12507.html [nap.edu]

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (1)

mpoulton (689851) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802039)

CMEs always drastically affect long-distance radio communications, especially in modes that rely on upper atmospheric characteristics (skip and ducting). It's not subtle at all. Anyone who woks with radio in a technical capacity has to cope with it. It's just that most commercial services are designed and operated in ways that keep end users from having to deal with these effects.

Re:Has this ever caused noticeable interference? (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38803271)

In 1989, a solar storm caused a massive blackout in Quebec. It can also pull the northern lights further south. 1859 it caused telegragh lins to burn. Wake up and watch some science or do some reading. Now until 2013 the sun will be exploding and releasing energy like it has every 12 years, for billion of years.

Fifth Cycle... (0)

idbeholda (2405958) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801225)

Earth deluged by fire... mayan calendar... panemonium ensues... satellite communication goes down for about a week. Nothing to really panic about.

Re:Fifth Cycle... (1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801241)

Newt Gingrich might wind up in the White House.

Re:Fifth Cycle... (2)

idbeholda (2405958) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801747)

Not if the venusian scorpions have anything to say about it.

Re:Fifth Cycle... (-1)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38802609)

Why don't you take your 2012 Mayan calender fantasy bullshit and fuck off? Or shoot yourself in the face.

Re:Fifth Cycle... (0)

ThePeices (635180) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802763)

U mad?

Chinese Zodiac (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38801295)

Its the year of the dragon my friends...get used to the fireworks. They bring good luck and crappy HF reception.

Sun Blasts Incoming Chicago Mercantile Exchange (0)

sneilan (1416093) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801341)

Sun Blasts Another Incoming Chicago Mercantile Exchange (CME).

AAAAAAA!!! DUCK AND COVER!!!!

Fucking Sun (0)

Greyfox (87712) | more than 2 years ago | (#38801923)

I'm glad Oracle took them over!

Trouble (1)

JavaBear (9872) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802221)

You just KNOW it's bad, when the sun starts taking potshots at us.

Does this mean a light show? (1)

Trogre (513942) | more than 2 years ago | (#38802247)

Will this lead to impressive Southern Lights visible from Australia?

Length (0)

Anonymous Coward | more than 2 years ago | (#38802845)

Does anyone know how long it is going to last? Will it still be hitting the earth for days to come?

WTF /.? (3, Insightful)

teridon (139550) | more than 2 years ago | (#38803229)

45 comments, perhaps 3 of which that aren't jokes or AC trolls. /. used to be a place where science could be discussed intelligently...

I guess I'll spend my time at reddit r/askscience instead!

If you want to make your own high-res movies of these kinds of events, get JHelioviewer [jhelioviewer.org]

Re:WTF /.? (1)

Curunir_wolf (588405) | more than 2 years ago | (#38804839)

45 comments, perhaps 3 of which that aren't jokes or AC trolls. /. used to be a place where science could be discussed intelligently...

Really? When was that?

Well, okay, could is probably true.

Too many Coronas (1)

chaynlynk (1523701) | more than 2 years ago | (#38803819)

I sometimes have mass ejections as well if I drink too many Coronas. :D

GPS failures (1)

ruheling (570438) | more than 2 years ago | (#38807273)

Might be a good time for most of the drivers around here to learn how to read maps

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