A new astronomical phenomenon is set to occur in the coming days, and it isn’t the typical visual spectacle of an eclipse or meteor shower. Instead, scientists are predicting the arrival of a “cannibalistic” solar storm, known as a coronal magnetic ejection (CME), which could have significant effects on Earth.
According to experts, this phenomenon will directly impact the Earth on Friday, December 1, with projections from the Sun expected to travel towards our planet. While it will have global effects, specialists are predicting that Mexico could also experience some of the impacts of this solar storm.
The Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC) of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA) in the United States has forecasted that the storm could begin on Friday, November 30, with solar energy traveling at speeds of 800 kilometers per hour. Similar coronal mass ejections detected in the past have been categorized as “G3,” meaning they are strong. However, NASA has reported that this upcoming solar storm is expected to reach a G2 level and last approximately 15 hours.
The Sun’s immense thermonuclear reactions can produce temperatures in the millions of degrees and intense magnetic fields. While the idea of a solar storm might sound alarming, it’s been suggested that there should be no immediate danger to people’s health or the environment. Still, experts advise against prolonged exposure to the Sun’s rays during this time.
Telecommunications are expected to be most affected. The solar storm could potentially disrupt radio and GPS signals, as well as telephone and internet access, leading to potential blackouts in satellite services. In Mexico, this could mean difficulties in sending and receiving SMS messages, making calls, and using social networks as a means of communication.
The “cannibal” name is derived from the storm’s expected power and speed, surpassing recent ejections from the Sun. Despite the intimidating name, coronal mass ejections are a common occurrence, where magnetized plasma and radiation are ejected into space as a result of solar eruptions.
The upcoming solar storm is certainly an astronomical event to watch, but experts are confident that its effects, while disruptive, should not pose significant danger to the planet.