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ALERT: Sun Erupts With 2 of the Strongest Solar Flares It Can Unleash -- Two Million-mph 'Tongues of Fire'

(SPACE.com) -- The sun erupted with two of the strongest solar flares it can unleash Friday, just days after blasting an intense solar storm at Earth.

The sun fired off a flare that registered at X1.7 on the space weather scale at 4:01 a.m. EDT (0801 GMT) Friday, then followed with an X.2-class event at 11:07 a.m. EDT (1507 GMT). NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured video of the X1.7 solar flare, which came after several smaller sun storms over the last few days.

Both powerful flares erupted from a new sunspot cluster called Region 1882 and sparked temporary radio blackouts, officials with the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration's Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) said in an update. But neither eruption is likely to spark major geomagnetic storms in Earth's magnetic field, they added. [Solar Max: Sun Storm Photos of 2013]

Astronomers classify solar flares into three categories — C, M and X — with C being the weakest and X the strongest. When aimed directly at Earth, X-class sun eruptions can interfere with satellite-based communications and navigation systems and also endanger astronauts in orbit. Read more via Fox News...

 

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