Tech: Rare 'superflares' could one day threaten Earth

Tech: Rare 'superflares' could one day threaten Earth

Space experts examining the edges of the Milky Way have as of late watched superflares - enormous blasts of vitality from stars that can be seen from many light years away.

"When our Sun was young, it was very active because it rotated very fast and probably generated more powerful flares".

According to the latest reports coming from, researchers at the University of Colorado Boulder (CU Boulder) in the U.S. are now fearing that older and quieter stars like our Sun can produce these blasts. The team estimates that calm stars like the Sun have superflares about every 1,000 years. According to Yuta Notsu, author of the study and a visiting researcher at CU Boulder's Laboratory for Atmospheric and Space Physics, this solar flare could be a "wake-up call for life on our planet". "More accurate evaluations of the effects of superflares is a next urgent task", Notsu told Astronomy, "but we can now expect things such as large-scale blackouts, satellite communication failure, and strong radiation in space", which can do serious damage to instruments and astronauts alike. "But there was some risk we can experience this kind of event at the subsequent 100 years approximately".

The team studied superflares from hundreds of stars observed by NASA's now retired Kepler Space Telescope, the European Space Agency's Gaia spacecraft, and the Apache Point Observatory in New Mexico. The NASA spacecraft, launched in 2009, seeks out planets circling stars far from Earth. In rare events, the light from distant stars seemed to get suddenly, and momentarily, brighter.

Scientists are just recently discovering that more stable stars, such as our Sun, are capable of causing such phenomena known as superflares. Be that as it may, what the Kepler information was appearing at being a lot greater, on the request of hundreds to thousands of times more dominant than the biggest flare at any point recorded with present-day instruments on Earth. However, official statistics confirm that most of the flares are emitted stars, with the average trend of one flare about per week.

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"In any case, we didn't have a clue if such huge flares happen on the advanced sun with low recurrence", he said. Superflares from the sun aren't expected to be frequent, but it's still important to be cautious.

According to the study published in The Astrophysical Journal, these pyrotechnic events can occur on older suns and the sun is no exception, as it could release a massive superflare in the next 100 years.

Roughly 4.6 billion years old, the sun is already a mature star that is in a relatively quiet, stable state. Then they subjected these events to statistical analysis. "People may have seen a large aurora", Notsu said in a statement, referring to the dancing Northern Lights or Southern Lights produced by solar particles interacting with molecules of Earth's atmosphere.

"Now, its a much bigger problem because of our electronics".

Co-authors on the recent study include researchers from Kyoto University, the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan, University of Hyogo, University of Washington and Leiden University.