Tuesday, NASA's space-based Solar Dynamics Observatory captured two giant eruptions of gas from the sun's surface. Wednesday, the same sun-watching satellite caught Earth's home star belching out yet another X-class flare -- the largest category, with M-class flares slightly less impressive, and C-class being the smallest.
The Boulder, Colorado-based U.S. Space Weather Prediction Center confirmed that Wednesday's flare caused a brief radio blackout on Earth. But officials said the flare wasn't so significant that it featured a coronal mass ejection, a burst of hot plasma sent into space.
Solar flare enthusiasts should stay tuned, because scientists say there is likely more to come. The sun is hitting its solar flare stride -- the most volatile portion of its 11-year weather cycle, called "solar maximum."
"It's back," Dean Pesnell, a scientist at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, said Tuesday. "Solar max has arrived."
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