A pair of CMEs approaching to jolt Earth’s magnetic field
According to various space-related reports, it has been confirmed on the morning of September 1st, 2021 that two enormous bubbles of superheated gas from our sun are heading towards Earth. These enormous bubbles are known as Coronal Mass Ejections or CMEs. However, there is no danger to the people on Earth.
These CMEs are not strong enough to completely knock out power grids or satellites. But they will be giving a “jolt” to the Earth’s magnetic field. This will cause a beautiful display of auroras at high altitudes.
An online website called SpaceWeather said that the estimated time of arrival is 1st to 2nd September. NOAA forecasters are expecting geomagnetic storms as strong as category G2. This inevitably means that the people staying as far as south of Idaho and New York will be able to see auroras. It is because those places have a geomagnetic latitude of 55 degrees.
In the latter days of the last week, the sun-watchers began to notice that the solar activity was picking up. The fact that the solar active region 12860 (AR 2860) produced 8 C-class solar flares proved this. Then again on 28th August, Saturday, the region produced a larger M4.7 solar flare. It happened at 5:30 UTC (1:30 a.m. EDT). This larger flare was easily visible in the 131-angstrom wavelength band from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory. The observatory showed that the solar plasma temperatures were over 10 billion degrees. This event created a minor radio blackout on the sun-facing side of the Earth. It also created a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) which is directed towards our planet. The experts did not expect that single CME to cause a large effect on the region around Earth.
But later, on the very same day, a massive filament of magnetism erupted on the sun. It was this huge arc of electrified gas in the sun’s atmosphere that produced a second CME directed towards Earth again. So now there are two CMEs that are moving across space in tandem towards our planet.
NOAA forecasters said that they expect the CMEs to deliver a double blow. Only a few hours will separate the blows. The first CME was likely to spark a minor G1-class geomagnetic storm late on September 1. The second CME could intensify the storm with its advent, boosting it to a moderately strong G2-class event on 2nd September.
According to SpaceWeather, storms like these cause no harm to power grids or satellites. They can, however, produce beautiful auroras at high latitudes. Due to the possibility of these two CMEs hitting the Earth, a light shower is possible in Canada, Iceland, Scandinavia, and even some northern-tier U.S. states.