M7-CLASS SOLAR FLARE : Sunspot AR2036 erupted on April 18th at 1307 UT, producing a strong M7-class solar flare. 

An S1-class radiation storm is underway in the aftermath of the flare. However, this is a relatively minor storm which poses minimal threat to satellites and aircraft.

Of greater interest is a CME that emerged from the blast site. The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory recorded the storm cloud racing away from the sun at aproximately 800 km/s:

cme_anim

This CME could deliver a glancing blow to Earth’s magnetic field on April 20-21. Two or three minor CMEs traveling ahead of this one are expected to arrive on April 19-20, and the combined impacts could generate geomagnetic activity throughout the weekend. NOAA forecasters put the odds of a geomagnetic storm at 55% on Saturday, increasing to 75% on Sunday. High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras. Solar flare alerts: textvoice

http://spaceweather.com/

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