Prominence eruption and CME impact – March 12, 2012


YouTube video

A spectacular Filament Eruption (Prominence) ripped off the lower southeast quadrant of the Sun today and large Coronal Mass Ejection followed but is not heading for the earth. Video by:

Filaments are large regions that contain very dense, cool gas, held in place by the Sun’s magnetic field in the Photosphere Region. These Solar Filaments can sometimes last for several days or months. Filaments and Solar Prominences are the same type of event. This type of event is considered a prominence when it is located off the limb of the Sun and appears bright against the darkness of space. It is called a filament when the cooler gas inside makes it appear darker against the background of the Sun.


A Geomagnetic Sudden Impulse was detected at 09:21 UTC. This signals the passage of an IP Shock.

CME IMPACT from a coronal mass ejection released from the sun march 10 has slammed into the Earth’s magnetosphere causing a sharp deviation on the interplanetary magnetic field (IMF), which saw the Bz component deviate 96 nT. Solar winds jumped from 400km/s to almost 600km/s on the impact.

Space Weather Message Code: ALTK06
Serial Number: 281
Issue Time: 2012 Mar 12 11:54 UTC

ALERT: Geomagnetic K-index of 6
Threshold Reached: 2012 Mar 12 11:55 UTC
Synoptic Period: 0900-1200 UTC

Active Warning: Yes
NOAA Scale: G2 – Moderate

Potential Impacts: Area of impact primarily poleward of 55 degrees Geomagnetic Latitude.
Induced Currents – Power grid fluctuations can occur. High-latitude power systems may experience voltage alarms.
Spacecraft – Satellite orientation irregularities may occur; increased drag on low Earth-orbit satellites is possible.
Radio – HF (high frequency) radio propagation can fade at higher latitudes.
Aurora – Aurora may be seen as low as New York to Wisconsin to Washington state.


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