The solar storm has the potential to result in vivid auroras.
Powerful solar storms are expected to hit the Earth on Friday (December 1), according to a forecasting model developed by the US-based agency NOAA. Caused by a coronal mass ejection (CME), they will generate geomagnetic waves that are likely to impact radio, GPS, and satellite communication, space weather physicist Tamitha Skov said on X (formerly Twitter). NOAA has officially categorised the storms as G2 (having moderate intensity), but Ms Skov said they can be as powerful as G3-class storms.
The solar storms were released by a CME that occurred on November 27, according to NOAA.
They could also combine to form a 'cannibal' CME, sparking an even stronger geomagnetic storm. The biggest CME was caused by an M-class flare on Wednesday. Solar flares are caused when large loops of plasma on the sun's surface'snap' like an elastic band, firing electromagnetic particles into space.
As per the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA), the impending solar storm is expected to hit Earth on Thursday night and conclude by early morning on Friday, December 1.
Coronal mass ejections (CMEs) are massive clouds of charged particles hurled from the sun. These particles can wreak havoc on Earth's technological infrastructure, disrupting satellite communications and radio signals. While the upcoming solar storm is expected to be relatively mild, it could still cause minor disruptions to high-latitude communication systems.
Despite the potential risks, solar storms generally pose no direct threat to human health. However, extremely powerful solar flares can emit harmful radiation capable of affecting living organisms. Fortunately, Earth's protective atmosphere shields us from the brunt of this radiation, minimizing its impact on humans.