This image was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory. It shows a solar flare, as seen in the bright flash at Suns lower centre on Oct. 28, 2021. This image is a subset that uses extreme ultraviolet light to highlight the very hot material in flares. It has been colorized in teal. Credit: NASA/SDO
On Oct. 28, 2021, the Sun produced a large solar flare that reached its peak at 11:35 AM EDT. The event was captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory.
Solar flares can produce powerful radiation bursts. Although harmful radiation from a flare can't pass through Earth’s atmosphere to affect people on the ground, it can disrupt the atmosphere in the layer that GPS and communications signals travel.
This flare is classified in the X1-class.
The X-class stands for the most intense flares. The number indicates its strength. An X2 flare is twice as intense than an X1, while an X3 flare is three times as strong, etc. Flares that are rated X10 or higher are unusually intense.