X-FLARE: Earth-orbiting satellites have just detected a powerful X1.6-class solar flare (Sept. 10 @ 17:46 UT). The source was active sunspot AR2158, which is directly facing Earth. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory recorded the extreme ultraviolet flash:
Ionizing radiation from the flare could cause HF radio blackouts and other communications disturbances, especially on the day-lit side of Earth. In the next few hours, when coronagraph data from SOHO and STEREO become available, we will see if a CME emerges from the blast site. If so, the cloud would likely be aimed directly at Earth and could reach our planet in 2 to 3 days. Stay tuned for updates about geomagnetic storms in the offing.