Massive X class flare erupts from the sunspot 2192

As we previously mentioned on WUWT, the Sunspot 2192 which is as large as Jupiter had the potential of hurling large solar flares toward Earth. According to NASA’s “Giant sunspot AR2192 has a ‘beta-gamma-delta’ magnetic field that harbors energy for strong explosions. NOAA forecasters estimate an 85% chance of M-class flares and a 45% chance of X-flares on Oct. 24th. If an explosion does occur, it will be geoeffective because the sunspot is directly facing Earth.”

It has just released what appears to be an x-class flare, possibly an X3.


From the WUWT Solar Reference Page, the X-Ray plot:


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October 24, 2014 3:03 pm

Everybody duck!

Alec aka Daffy Duck
Reply to  Caleb
October 24, 2014 3:20 pm

I’m there

Reply to  Alec aka Daffy Duck
October 24, 2014 11:13 pm

That reply was not all it was quacked up to be.

John fisk
October 24, 2014 3:10 pm

Will,this hit earth and will my solar panels be damaged?

Green Sand
Reply to  John fisk
October 24, 2014 3:40 pm

Well having made such a substantial investment I trust you have taken sufficient precautions in order to protect your panels from the sun’s harmful rays?

Reply to  Green Sand
October 25, 2014 12:31 pm

LOL –that was funny!

Reply to  John fisk
October 25, 2014 12:04 am

No – only those solar panels slapped on AGW believer’s roofs. In a cunningly maverick way, our sun will appease the panels belonging to the meek (the ones who have known all along that our sun is the true boss and that CO2 has bugger all to do with any ‘warming’).

Ron Morse
October 24, 2014 3:14 pm

Goldangit! I just washed the car!

Green Sand
Reply to  Ron Morse
October 24, 2014 3:30 pm

LOL, made a bad UK day a lot better!

October 24, 2014 3:15 pm
Reply to  vukcevic
October 24, 2014 4:03 pm

from Raben Systems, Inc.
Flares in the past 48 hours: C3.7, M1.1, C4.6, C5.9, C3.3, C4.2, C3.4, C3.6, M4.0, C3.6, C5.1
Number of Sunspots: 58
Sunspots change: 3
Area: 2740
Area Change: 40
NOAA solar events:

Reply to  John
October 24, 2014 5:00 pm

Raben info just updated to include the X3.1 — its interesting to see the solar site to site differences.

Reply to  John
October 25, 2014 11:27 am

Raben is now reporting 12192:
Area: 2510
Number of Sunspots: 62

Reply to  vukcevic
October 24, 2014 4:35 pm

NASA images of the event:

george e. smith
Reply to  vukcevic
October 25, 2014 5:51 pm

Well a power density of a whole micro-watt per square meter, is enough to scare the be haysoos out of me. I bet the tin amalgam fillings I still have in my teeth, will be able to detect that. Maybe I will hear radio signals from the far side of the earth, buzzing in my molars. Nyet on the grid melt down.

The Ol' Seadog.
October 24, 2014 3:22 pm

Is there any connection between solar flares and surges in Arctic Temperatures ? See

Bill Jamison
October 24, 2014 3:25 pm

How long does it take to know if a CME occurred?

Reply to  Bill Jamison
October 24, 2014 11:17 pm

From SpaceWeather: “Coronagraph data from the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) suggest that the explosion did not hurl a significant CME toward our planet. (Interestinngly, none of the X-flares from this active region has so far produced a major CME.) As a result, Earth-effects may be limited to the radio blackout. “

Charles Nelson
October 24, 2014 3:32 pm

At what point in the cycle did the Carrington Event occur, and what were the characteristics of that particular cycle?

October 24, 2014 3:33 pm

˙eɯıʇ eɯɐs ʇɐ llɐ ʇou ʇsnɾ ‘ʎɐʍʎuɐ ʇɐɥʇ op ʎllɐuoısɐɔɔo ʇnq (-؛ ˙ɟɟnʇs ǝeuɐɹʇs guıop eɹɐ ɥʇıʍ ʞɹoʍ ʇsnɯ ı spɐp oop sɔıuoɹʇɔele llɐ

Reply to  uıʇɹɐɯ pɹɐʍpE
October 24, 2014 4:14 pm

Funny – upside down person – you must be from OZ. Had to turn my computer upside down to read…

Reply to  J. Philip Peterson
October 25, 2014 12:25 am

you need to read other people’s newspapers on the bus, everyday, then it would be easy!

Reply to  uıʇɹɐɯ pɹɐʍpE
October 24, 2014 4:33 pm

My wife, a kindergarten teacher, had no problem at all reading that : )

Reply to  Genghis
October 24, 2014 7:56 pm

Perhaps she’s a bit dyslexic?

Reply to  uıʇɹɐɯ pɹɐʍpE
October 24, 2014 4:47 pm

Exactly, it’s in the timing.

Reply to  uıʇɹɐɯ pɹɐʍpE
October 24, 2014 11:19 pm

You mispelled “g”. The proper spelling is “6”

October 24, 2014 3:35 pm

So what, in simple terms, is the significance for us ?? apart from bad radio/tv reception

Reply to  1saveenergy
October 24, 2014 3:48 pm

Yes, could someone in the know tell us what we can expect given the strength and direction of this flare?

Reply to  nigelf
October 24, 2014 10:26 pm


William Mason
Reply to  1saveenergy
October 24, 2014 4:01 pm

Northern lights extending further south. I doubt it will be overly disruptive otherwise. Just my opinion though.

Reply to  William Mason
October 25, 2014 10:01 am

Ah, so Britain will be cloudy then.

Reply to  1saveenergy
October 24, 2014 4:50 pm

NOAA Alert:
Space Weather Message Code: SUMX01
Serial Number: 106
Issue Time: 2014 Oct 24 2236 UTC
SUMMARY: X-ray Event exceeded X1
Begin Time: 2014 Oct 24 2107 UTC
Maximum Time: 2014 Oct 24 2141 UTC
End Time: 2014 Oct 24 2213 UTC
X-ray Class: X3.1
Optical Class: 3b
Location: S12W22
NOAA Scale: R3 – Strong
Potential Impacts: Area of impact consists of large portions of the sunlit side of Earth, strongest at the sub-solar point.
Radio – Wide area blackout of HF (high frequency) radio communication for about an hour.

Reply to  John
October 25, 2014 11:37 am

NOAA is showing another event >M5
Current D Region Absorption Predictions:
“Conditions in the D region of the ionosphere have a dramatic effect on high frequency (HF) communications and low frequency (LF) navigation systems.”

Phil B.
October 24, 2014 3:47 pm

“Massive” – sunspots this size, with this complexity, at this point in the solar cycle should be hitting X10+ (as they have done in previous cycles), accompanied by major CME. That these flares are so (relatively) small and have such little ejecta is further proof of the weak solar maximum and impending solar shutdown.

Reply to  Phil B.
October 24, 2014 11:15 pm

“Massive” proof of the weak solar maximum and impending solar shutdown of thought everywhere! You meant to say… With some complexity.. and a sunspot.

October 24, 2014 3:56 pm

The Carrington Event was supposedly of the order of an X40 flare, so this tiddler isn’t going to wipe out civilization.

Green Sand
Reply to  PhilipPeake
October 24, 2014 4:03 pm

Any chance it might take out an Xbox or three?

Reply to  PhilipPeake
October 24, 2014 11:17 pm

Was it a flare?

Luke Warmist
October 24, 2014 4:40 pm

Ummm, how long does it take to get here? Do I have enough time to go grab a burger?

Gary Pearse
Reply to  Luke Warmist
October 24, 2014 5:22 pm

Get it cooked medium rare.

Mac the Knife
Reply to  Luke Warmist
October 24, 2014 6:03 pm

You’ve time for a hand made pizza… and a couple of bottles of Prosecco!

Reply to  Mac the Knife
October 24, 2014 10:20 pm

No time for astronomical observations tho… apparently… /sarc

Jay Hope
Reply to  Luke Warmist
October 25, 2014 1:21 am

From what I’ve studied about the Sun, a CME must be ‘launched’ from near the centre of the Sun onto a trajectory that will cause it to impact the mag field of Earth. The CME must also be fast and massive with a strong mag field of its own. Its orientation must also be opposite that of Earth’s. So don’t worry! 🙂

Luke Warmist
October 24, 2014 4:57 pm

Re: the Carrington event from Wikipedia…
17.6 hours, because a previous event cleared the way for it. One would then presume this one will be a bit slower. Off to get that burger.

Reply to  Luke Warmist
October 24, 2014 11:18 pm

Wikipedia is google spam!

October 24, 2014 5:13 pm

From the NOAA SWPC:
Top News of the Day:
2014-10-24 21:41 UTC R3 (Strong) Radio Blackout in progress
We said it remained a threat and here it is, producing another R3 (Strong) Radio Blackout that at the time of this posting, is still on the climb. The event began at 5:07pm EDT (2107 UTC) and is still going strong over 30 minutes later. The main communications impacts from this event are over the Pacific Ocean. In the meantime, forecasters remain vigilant to see if there is an associated coronal mass ejection. As we learn more about this event we will update this space.

Anything is possible
Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
October 24, 2014 5:32 pm

“In the meantime, forecasters remain vigilant to see if there is an associated coronal mass ejection.”
It would appear not.

Ulric Lyons
October 24, 2014 5:31 pm

The flare began about 12 hours before the center of a superior conjunction of Venus:

Mac the Knife
Reply to  Ulric Lyons
October 24, 2014 6:08 pm

Which is relevant….. in what way?

Reply to  Mac the Knife
October 24, 2014 9:50 pm

It’s an observation.. Astronomy is based on astronomical observations. In that way! just a wild guess 🙂

Henry Galt
Reply to  Mac the Knife
October 25, 2014 3:31 am

Several ways. Not least because it was predicted a while back.

October 24, 2014 5:40 pm

A high energy event like the X45 Carrington got here in ~18 hours, the much smaller X1 type events I believe can take around 40 hours. The CME that causes the aurora that is. It’s separate from what is causing the radio black outs. We see the aurora result about 2 days later. I’m hoping for some good auroras that can be seen in the mid-latitudes. It would take an X25+ to do any electrical damage. Like grid damage. This is just pretty lights. 🙂

Mac the Knife
October 24, 2014 6:19 pm

Seriously, this is a perfect opportunity to learn much about large ‘sunspots’, large solar flares, and interactions with earthly electromagnetic fields, with the full panoply of modern space and ground based instruments recording all. We can count our blessings that a large CME was not associated with this event!
Now, If the damn skies would clear enough to get a look at any aurora visible from the south Seattle WA area, I’d stay up to the wee hours for a glimpse!!! As a lad and then young man, I saw some phenomenal aurora when I lived in Wisconsin years ago. I’d like to revisit that particular delight…

carbon bigfoot
October 24, 2014 6:54 pm

At 71 any coronal mass ejection would be welcome!!!

Reply to  carbon bigfoot
October 24, 2014 7:42 pm

Better than a coronial mass ejection. 🙂

October 24, 2014 7:44 pm

It should arrive soon, should I turn off my computer and put it in a lead box?

Reply to  J. Philip Peterson
October 24, 2014 9:38 pm

If you want to.

Mike McMillan
Reply to  J. Philip Peterson
October 25, 2014 1:05 pm

Just put your tinfoil hat on top of it. We need the lead for ammo.

Old Ranga
October 24, 2014 7:46 pm

What effect to these things have on earth’s temperature? And how long before such effects become apparent?

Reply to  Old Ranga
October 24, 2014 9:39 pm

How long is a piece of string?

High Treason
October 24, 2014 7:52 pm

More to the point, power transformers must be taken off line so they do not get fried with back EMF. High tension powerlines should, if possible be disconnected to avoid melting, but this is even less practical. The sudden outage of power if prolonged will cause chaos and rioting/mayhem. The economy will grind to a rapid halt.Luckily we should get warning, but call me a pessimist, I could see bureaucrats not wanting to switch off the power grid for 20 minutes.

Reply to  High Treason
October 24, 2014 9:14 pm

It’s a sunspot!

george e. smith
Reply to  High Treason
October 25, 2014 5:36 pm

Well I’m sorry to deflate your balloon, but high tension power lines are tightly twisted three or six phase “cables” and something as remote as the sun, doesn’t have a prayer in terms of inducing enough “emf” in them to even make a note of. Free space has a characteristic impedance of 377 ohms (actually 120.PI), so good luck at squeezing any signal out of that, that would melt even 36 gauge wire.
Have you ever noticed how many barbed wire fences, and tennis court wire mesh antennas, get blown to smithereens, every time the sun burps ??
It’s time that myth busters focused their attention on “solar flareups.”

Reply to  george e. smith
October 26, 2014 5:03 pm knocked out power in Quebec
(factors can include grid loaded too high, protective trips, supposedly ground path….
Today better monitoring is used, fed by watching the sun so control centre is ready for the possibility. q

Joel O'Bryan
October 24, 2014 8:37 pm

The fact that there was no CME with an X3.1 flare should be a subtle hint as to where the solar magnetism is headed.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
October 24, 2014 9:17 pm

Where is solar magnetism headed? where’s your “fact”?

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Sparks
October 24, 2014 9:49 pm

10/23/2014 @ 00:10 UTC
Updated video of the X1.3 solar flare is now available. This may be hard to believe, but it appears that little to no coronal mass ejection (CME) was associated with the event. More to follow if necessary.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
October 24, 2014 9:55 pm

My question still stands. Where is solar magnetism headed? although your “fact” now seems to be a variable!

Joel O'Bryan
Reply to  Sparks
October 24, 2014 10:25 pm

Sunspot 2192 unleashed the sixth strongest solar flare of the current solar cycle, a major X3.1 solar flare peaking at 21:40 UTC on Friday evening. To our surprise, just like all previous events around 2192, little to no CME appears to be associated. More updates to follow if necessary.
Where is solar magnetism headed: Maybe (admittedly a BIG maybe) a prolonged period of no reported auroras for several cycles. Like the Maunder.

Reply to  Joel O'Bryan
October 24, 2014 10:38 pm

That is interesting! a period like the ‘Maunder’ equates to “no reported auroras”.

Tom in Florida
Reply to  Sparks
October 25, 2014 6:18 am

re: Joel O’Bryan
“Updated video of the X1.3 solar flare is now available. This may be hard to believe, but it appears that little to no coronal mass ejection (CME) was associated with the event. ”
As Leif indicated it wasn’t likely a couple of days ago on another thread:
lsvalgaard October 22, 2014 at 7:44 pm
“If the group produces a CME [I don’t think it will – the corona doesn’t look right for that]…”

October 24, 2014 8:45 pm

And we worry about hundredths of a degree in temp year to year.
Think about it. We live next to a nuclear ball of light. “Poof” is possible and there is nothing we can do…..

Reply to  ossqss
October 24, 2014 9:19 pm

You could educate yourself.. Maybe?

Paul Westhaver
October 24, 2014 9:13 pm

I was out for a walk in the woods when it happened. I missed it. All seemed as per usual when I came back.
Any calculate the # Joules dumped into the atmosphere from the flare?

Reply to  Paul Westhaver
October 24, 2014 9:28 pm

Joules? is that supposed to be another # sarcastic trend? You know back in my day “Temporary apertures” were understood.

Paul Westhaver
Reply to  Sparks
October 25, 2014 5:46 pm

Please for give my blindingly obvious lack of contemporary twitter savy… VERY funny! I don’t do twitter. There is value in privacy.

Reply to  Paul Westhaver
October 26, 2014 6:24 am

Paul twitter is so last week anyway lol

October 24, 2014 9:15 pm

I just looked outside and didn’t see anything.

October 24, 2014 9:17 pm

So,,, can anyone tell us the level of the biggest X class events ?
X 41 rings a bell at the top end, no?

Reply to  ossqss
October 24, 2014 9:29 pm


Reply to  ossqss
October 24, 2014 10:06 pm

The thing is.. asking a question and answering it yourself doesn’t seem to be the strongest trait you have going for you!

Ra Ra Ra! WUWT
October 24, 2014 9:24 pm

Appreciate the heads up. Another reason why I frequent this website. Something taken for granted stops…good to know why.
Now expecting WUWT to get me at least 24hr head start to do ALL my doomsday prepping for the apocalyptic solar flare.
With 24hrs notice I will have time to get into my neighbors fully stocked subterranean capsule…and lock the door.

Henry Galt
Reply to  Ra Ra Ra! WUWT
October 25, 2014 3:30 am

Sparks has made me laugh a couple times in his current threadbombing but…
That was f’ing funny right there Ra Ra Ra!

See - owe to Rich
October 25, 2014 5:19 am

This is the first sunspot I have seen with the naked eye for a long time. Just a few moments ago, with my trusty Solashield Eye Protection (bought for the 1999 eclipse in England) I viewed it and could see two distinct patches.
However, it’s more satisfying to view it without any filter, just looking at the Sun as an ancient would. But for safety that would require a cloudless sunset with plenty of haze. Here in Gloucestershire I think the sunshine is only temporary, and with the cold front that has gone through there won’t be much haze. So I doubt that I’ll achieve it this evening.

October 25, 2014 11:46 am

Just had our 4th X level event this week.

Ulric Lyons
October 25, 2014 1:12 pm

Oops, not a good day for an Amateur Radio competition!

Ulric Lyons
Reply to  Ulric Lyons
October 26, 2014 8:37 am

Two more X-flares, an X1.0 and an X2.0:

October 25, 2014 2:09 pm

Question– Aren’t solar flares emitted radially? While the sunspots on the solar “disk” appear to be pointed at us, they are about 30 degrees low on the sphere. Doesn’t that mean a clear miss?

October 26, 2014 8:34 am

This thread is disappointing, some ignorant comments in it.
I believe that EM coupling from solar emissions into long wires is a known phenomenon. (Yes, there is scare-mongering.)
Fences are not electricity lines, including because they are usually grounded (attached to wood or metal posts), except for electric-shock fences which are insulated at each post – except for the electric potential generating box.
Twisted cable bundles may well be a good idea for high voltage electricity transmission lines, but all the lines I’ve paid any attention to have discrete conductors- that’s why the tower tops are so wide.
I’d be very careful extrapolating from one geometry and voltage to another. A rough parallel is lightning, and minor versions of it such as engine spark plugs – in that case conduction occurs across an air gap, as the air breaks down. That’s not geometry, except for proximity of things that could conduct the energy, such as a tree (often hit by lightning because that’s the shortest path for the charge).
(Don’t you have to consider length of the conductor and its resistance, in predicting effect?)
And don’t overlook the proven risk of solar e-m emissions damaging satelites. (Hopefully recent designs are better.)

Reply to  Keith Sketchley
October 26, 2014 3:18 pm

Seems like the long way of saying, shouldn’t pee on a spark plug 🙂

george e. smith
Reply to  Keith Sketchley
October 27, 2014 4:17 pm

Yes Keith, there certainly are some ignorant comments in this thread.
The earth as seen from the sun, is so tiny, subtending about 17.75 arc seconds, that any EM field emitting from the sun, is essentially constant over the entire projected area of the earth. So any Voltage difference across even a 1,000 mile long wire, is going to be miniscule, and that Voltage difference coming from a source resistance of 377 ohms (free space), will result in a very tiny current.
But high Voltage transmission lines, are in fact tightly twisted multiwire cables.
At 60 Hz power grid frequency, the wavelength is 5,000 km, so a thousand mile path is a very good low frequency antenna, and would radiate oodles of 60 Hz energy, if the transmission lines were not twisted.
So next time you look at a high Voltage transmission line, walk along it for a few miles, and you will see the three, or six wires regularly shifting in between towers, maybe one shift (1/3rd twist) per mile, or about one full twist in 3 miles. So that’s about 1,000 twists in a wavelength; more than tight enough to suppress any significant radiation. And the same twisting will result in mutually cancelling Voltages between the several wires, so virtually no current can flow from external EM radiation sources.
If you lived in California, I could tell you exactly where to go on hiway five to observe the HV line twisting going on right along the freeway, and they do a third of a twist about every mile on that line which is probably a 12,000 Volt line.
It is usually controller circuit failure that causes power outages. It certainly isn’t wire melting currents generated in the transmission lines, or lightning would make it impossible to send electric power anywhere.
But don’t worry; ignorance is not a disease. We are all born with it.

Reply to  george e. smith
October 28, 2014 3:10 pm

So why was the grid in Quebec lost for 9 hours after an eruption in 1989?
As for twisting, make sure you are distinguishing between different conductive paths (which are insulated conductors) and the makeup of a typical stranded cable, which looks like “wire rope” – several conductors in close contact, sometimes aluminum (for better conductivity) twisted around a steel core wire (for strength), functionally a single conductor.
Why do typical HV utility lines have separate cables, well-spaced, of quantity that matches the phases? (Sometimes a grounded guard wire as well, that’s the one that Quebec’s utility used above the live, which was pulled down onto live cables by the ice storm before 1989.)
FTR, I didn’t say a CME would melt power wires, I do say it can disrupt the electrical supply system – it took Quebec nine hours to restore power. (Yes, they and others learned how to design and operate better.)
Oh, and you have not explained why CME events have damaged satellites (even geos are a very long way from the sun).

October 28, 2014 11:28 pm

Watch this NASA science video about a coronal mass ejection (CME) propelled in our direction by an X5-class solar flare which hit Earth’s magnetic field in March 2012. Take note of what is said about carbon dioxide and nitric oxide … they act as a natural atmospheric thermostat … they are the two most efficient atmospheric coolants:

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