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National Aeronautics and Space Administration

Goddard Space Flight Center

Sun-Earth Day 2010: Magnetic Storms.

Sun-Earth Day 2010: Magnetic Storms

IMAGE GALLERY

Active region 10486 became the largest sunspot seen by SOHO, It unleashed a spectacular show on 28 October 2003. An X 17.2 flare, the second largest flare observed by SOHO and the third largest ever recorded, blasted off a strong high energy proton event and a fast-moving Coronal Mass Ejection. The spot occupied an area equal to about 15 Earths, a size not seen since 1989. It later fired off the largest X-ray flare recorded, on 4 November 2003.
SOHO MDI Sunspot size winner

Active region 10486 became the largest sunspot seen by SOHO, It unleashed a spectacular show on 28 October 2003. An X 17.2 flare, the second largest flare observed by SOHO and the third largest ever recorded, blasted off a strong high energy proton event and a fast-moving Coronal Mass Ejection. The spot occupied an area equal to about 15 Earths, a size not seen since 1989. It later fired off the largest X-ray flare recorded, on 4 November 2003.

NASA Fact

During intense solar flares, astronauts see bright flashing streaks of light as a result of high-energy particles zipping through their eyeballs.