As Seen by STEREO-A: The Carrington-Class CME of 2012

STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory) is a solar observation mission, it consists of two space-based observatories - one ahead of Earth in its orbit (STEREO-A), the other trailing behind (STEREO-B). The two nearly identical spacecraft were launched in 2006 into orbits around the Sun that cause them to respectively pull farther ahead of and fall gradually behind the Earth. This enables stereoscopic imaging of the Sun and solar phenomena, such as coronal mass ejections.

STEREO-A, at a position along Earth’s orbit where it has an unobstructed view of the far side of the Sun, could clearly observe possibly the most powerful coronal mass ejection (CME) of solar cyle 24 on July 23, 2012. The flare erupted in the lower right quadrant of the solar disk from a large active region. The material launched into space in a direction towards STEREO-A. This created the ring-like ‘halo’ CME visible in the STEREO-A coronagraph, COR-2 (blue circular image). As the CME expanded beyond the field of view of the COR-2 imager, the high energy particles reached STEREO-A, and caused the snow-like noise in the image. Researchers have been analyzing the data ever since, and they have concluded that the storm was one of the strongest in recorded history. It might have been stronger than the Carrington Event itself.

The solar storm of 1859, also known as the Carrington Event, was a powerful geomagnetic solar storm in 1859 during solar cycle 10. A solar flare or coronal mass ejection hit Earth’s magnetosphere and induced the largest known solar storm, which was observed and recorded by Richard C. Carrington. The intense geomagnetic storm caused global telegraph lines to spark, setting fire to some telegraph offices and disabling the ‘Victorian Internet.” A similar storm today could have a catastrophic effect on modern power grids and telecommunication networks.

Credit: NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio

Posted 2 months ago with 1,185 notes
Tagged:Astronomysciencecarrington eventsolar flaresolar stormHeliophysicssunsolar activitynasastereo agifspacecme

  1. things-to-post reblogged this from trigonometry-is-my-bitch
  2. dontwastetimeexpandyourmind reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  3. puffadda reblogged this from astrogasmic
  4. whackingtoaster reblogged this from astrogasmic
  5. brokebiokid reblogged this from princeaquitaine
  6. zubenelgenubi-alphalibrae reblogged this from starsaremymuse
  7. princeaquitaine reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  8. cosmicvger reblogged this from gravitationalbeauty
  9. watertostone reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  10. fringespirit reblogged this from megacosms
  11. stonedbologna reblogged this from astrogasmic
  12. optimisticnarcissistic reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  13. enatation reblogged this from astrogasmic
  14. foamastuh reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  15. thelilbeast13 reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  16. narenthaker reblogged this from darthmobius
  17. astrogasmic reblogged this from astro-physics
  18. darthmobius reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  19. kameh101 reblogged this from n9nlinear
  20. zeroenerugi reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  21. fdobet11 reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  22. c0smicdread reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  23. humonk reblogged this from mentalalchemy
  24. millennialtrance reblogged this from mentalalchemy