Solar flare drowns out radio communications on Earth


Latest news – Every 200 years we receive a blast of solar energy from the sun, obviously the last wave 200 or so in the past did not take any electromagnet or comms out, because there wasn’t any to speak of. So the authorities as well as governments are getting a bit anxious in regards to the wave that is likely to hit us in the following few months, the sun flare seen on the 2nd of February is just the start of an active phase for the sun.


On 2 February, a tiny spot on the sun erupted into a moderately sized solar flare that was particularly loud in radio waves. With the sound of a roaring wave, it completely drowned out radio communication all over the Earth between 28 MHz and 21.1 MHz.


The recording above comes from either a short wave radio station or a Ham radio transmission, said amateur radio astronomer Thomas Ashcraft, who works with Nasa’s Radio JOVE project. It’s interesting to hear the voices get “swallowed up as the solar wave passes through,” he added in an email to


The sun is entering a period of high activity as it enters its solar maximum, the peak of an 11-year solar cycle. Despite this, our local star has been relatively quiet for the last few months, producing few large solar flares or coronal mass ejections – which occur when the sun throws off charged particles at millions of kilometers per hour.


The radio burst that happened on 2 February accelerated electrons to high energies. This electron stream created plasma and radio waves in the sun’s atmosphere, which traveled to Earth and disrupted some communications. The event was a fairly good-sized surge, said radio astronomer James Thieman, who leads the JOVE project.


“We have seen a few this year that were larger,” he added, but this one was still quite strong. Of course, the events of the recent solar cycle are entirely dwarfed by certain past solar outbursts, like the 1859 Carrington event, which caused widespread havoc and even set telegraph stations on fire.


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