Sunspot 1112 Crackling with Solar Flares

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On Saturday, October 16, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this stunning image of one of the most intense, solar flares seen in the past few months. So far there have been no reports of energetic particles from this M-class flare interfering with NASA spacecraft or making their way to Earth.

Fast-growing sunspot 1112 is crackling with solar flares. The three strongest of this 24 hour period: an M3-flare at 1910 UT on Oct. 16th, a C1-flare at 0900 UT and another C1-flare at 1740 UT on Oct. 17th. So far, none of the blasts has hurled a substantial CME toward Earth.

In addition, a vast filament of magnetism is cutting across the sun's southern hemisphere, measuring about 400,000 km. A bright 'hot spot' just north of the filament's midpoint is UV radiation from sunspot 1112. The proximity is no coincidence; the filament appears to be rooted in the sunspot below. If the sunspot flares, it could cause the entire structure to erupt. But so far, none of the flares has destabilized the filament.

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A 400,000 km filament of magnetism stretches across the sun's southern hemisphere.

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