Record-breaking solar flare detected by NASA Fermi sat

NASA space telescope detected the highest-energy light ever measured in an eruption on the sun during a potent solar blast, the space agency has reported.

The powerful solar flare, observed March 7 by the Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope, made such an outpouring of gamma rays — a form of light with even higher energy than X-rays — that the sun briefly became the brightest object in the gamma-ray sky, NASA mentioned Monday.

“For most of Fermi’s four years in orbit, its LAT saw the sun as a faint, steady gamma-ray supply thanks to the impacts of high-speed particles called cosmic rays,” Nicola Omodei, an astrophysicist at Stanford University, mentioned. “Now we’re starting to see what the sun itself can do.”

The March flare produced high-energy gamma rays for about 20 hours, two and a half times longer than any event on record, researchers stated.

Solar eruptions are rising as the sun moves toward the peak of its roughly 11-year-extended activity cycle, expected in mid-2013, they stated.


Sources and more information:

• Fermi telescope detects the highest-energy light from a solar flare

(Phys.org) — During a powerful solar blast on March 7, NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope detected the highest-energy light ever associated with an eruption on the sun. The discovery heralds Fermi’s new role as a solar observatory, a powerful new tool for understanding solar outbursts during the sun’s maximum period of activity.

• NASA’s Fermi Detects The Highest-energy Light From A Solar Flare

WASHINGTON, June 11, 2012 PRNewswire-USNewswire — During a powerful solar blast on March 7, NASA’s Fermi Gamma-ray Space Telescope detected the highest-energy light ever associated with an eruption on the sun. The discovery heralds Fermi’s new role as a solar observatory, a powerful new tool for understanding solar outbursts during the sun’s…

• Recent solar flare seen bombarding Earth with gamma rays

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