Unexpected solar flare smashes into Earth, causing radio blackouts in Australia and New Zealand

A solar flare has erupted from an area of dense magnetism on the sun’s surface, which caused a temporary radio blackout in parts of Australia and New Zealand.

  • NEWSWEEK – “[M5-class flares are] pretty severe. It’s a bit like the ‘Gale force’ scale for earth winds. An M-class flare is 10 times as intense as the next scale down (C-class),” Huw Morgan, head of solar system physics at Aberystwyth University in the United Kingdom, told Newsweek.
  • INTERESTING ENGINEERING – According to the European Space Agency’s website, a solar flare is released when energy stored in twisted magnetic fields is suddenly released. These events usually occur over sunspots, regions of the Sun where magnetic fields cause temporary disturbances in the convection of heat on the Sun. 
  • THETECHOUTLOOK – Even a blackout of power is also observed when the explosion is huge enough to disturb it. It can sometimes take days to bring things back on track due to this blackout. This time it has caused blackouts in New Zealand and Australia.