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Biggest solar flare in years erupts
Posted: Wed, Aug 10, 2011, 9:01 AM ET (1301 GMT)
Solar flare seen by SDO on 2011 Aug 9 (NASA) The most powerful solar flare of the current solar cycle took place early Tuesday, but the flare is not expected to have a major effect on the Earth. The flare, measured by spacecraft as class X6.9, erupted from the Sun at 3:49 am EDT (0749 GMT) Tuesday, with an associated coronal mass ejection. The flare's location near the limb of the Sun means that its effect on the Earth should be minimal, although it may create some radio communications blackouts. The flare was the most powerful one since December 2006. Solar activity is increasing as it approaches the peak of its 11-year cycle in 2013.
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