Strong M8.1 solar flare erupts from Region 2673

Strong M8.1 solar flare erupts from Region 2673

A strong solar flare measuring M8.1 at its peak erupted from Active Region 2673 at 07:49 UTC on September 8, 2017. The event started at 07:40 and ended at 07:58 UTC.

This is the third M-class solar flare of the day and the 18th since September 4, when the first M-class solar flare erupted from this region. Over those 4 days, we have also registered 3 major solar flares - X2.2, X9.3 and X1.3 and several Earth-directed CMEs. Some of them have already hit our planet, causing G4 - Severe geomagnetic storming.

There were no radio signatures associated with today's M8.1 flare suggesting a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) was produced.

M8.1 solar flare September 8, 2017 - X-ray flux

M8.1 solar flare September 8, 2017 - X-ray fluxM8.1 solar flare September 8, 2017 - SDO AIA 131

M8.1 solar flare September 8, 2017 - DRAP

Sunspots

There are currently 5 numbered sunspot groups on the Earth side of the Sun. The only one worth mentioning is Region 2673 ('beta-gamma-delta'), the source of all above-mentioned flares during the past 4 days. This region maintains its magnetic complexity. Despite minor decay in the leader spot, overall growth in area was observed as the region rotated towards the SW limb. 

Newly numbered Region 2679 and the remaining three other regions were relatively simple and quiet over the past 24 hours.

Sunspots on September 8, 2017

Sunspots on September 8, 2017. Credit: NASA/SDO HMI

2673 - Beta-Gamma-Delta
2674 - Beta
2677 - Beta
2678 - Alpha
2679 - Beta

SWPC alerts

Space Weather Message Code: SUMXM5
Serial Number: 152
Issue Time: 2017 Sep 08 0859 UTC

SUMMARY: X-ray Event exceeded M5
Begin Time: 2017 Sep 08 0740 UTC
Maximum Time: 2017 Sep 08 0749 UTC
End Time: 2017 Sep 08 0758 UTC
X-ray Class: M8.1

Optical Class: 2b
Location: S10W58
NOAA Scale: R2 - Moderate

Potential Impacts: Area of impact centered primarily on sub-solar point on the sunlit side of Earth.
Radio - Limited blackout of HF (high frequency) radio communication for tens of minutes.

Featured image credit: M8.1 solar flare on September 8, 2017. Credit: NASA/SDO AIA 131. Image acquired 07:58 UTC

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