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Radio blackouts experienced in Asia, Australia as sun unleashes intense solar flare

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INTENSE SOLAR FLARE: The Sun has unleashed an intense solar flare, sparking radio blackouts in several parts of Asia and Australia.

The Sun unleashed an intense solar flare, sparking radio blackouts in several parts of Asia and Australia. According to the US Space Weather Prediction Center (SWPC), the solar flare peaked late on April 17 at 3.34 GMT (9.04 IST) and was followed minutes later by a massive sun eruption known as a coronal mass ejection, Space.com reported.

The flare registered as an X1.1-class sun storm and lasted about 34 minutes, SWPC officials said.

The flare originated from Regions 2994 and 2993, a cluster of active sunspots that has seen “significant flaring” since it appeared on the eastern limb of the Sun, according to the SWPC.

“Solar activity is expected to be active over the next week as these sunspots migrate across the visible disk,” the agency said in an update.

The SWPC stated that the solar flare spawned a brief radio blackout and was classified as a Type II solar radio burst, the report said.

A pulse of X-rays from the flare produced a strong shortwave radio blackout over southeast Asia and Australia,” said NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, which recorded the X1-class solar flare.

“Mariners, aviators, and ham radio operators may have noticed unusual propagation effects at frequencies below 30 MHz,” it added.

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