The cause of geomagnetic disturbances — a powerful solar flare. On Friday, February 18 to the Earth gets the flow of plasma ejected by the sun in the night of Tuesday, February 15. This will cause the emission of a strong magnetic storm, according to experts of the Laboratory of X-ray astronomy of the Sun Lebedev Physical Institute.
On Tuesday night at 04.56 Moscow time on GOES satellites have recorded at Sun outbreak of class X2 — the fifth highest performance class. It was the largest outbreak since December 6, 2006.
Flash is almost exactly in the center of the solar disk, in front of the Earth, and was accompanied by a large release of plasma observed by several space instruments. Geomagnetic effects of the outbreak is almost inevitable, experts say.
The leading edge of release, according to satellite STEREO, was moving at a speed of 410 kilometers per second, according to RIA Novosti. If this rate continues, the earth's orbit to reach the bulk of the ejected plasma must be no later than the end of the day on Friday.
Duration of the expected geomagnetic disturbances can range from 10 hours to a day. The amplitude of the perturbation should not be very high and exceed the level of Kp-6 to 9-point scale.