An X-flare – the most powerful kind of solar flare – flashed briefly from the sun yesterday (March 29, 2014). It propelled a coronal mass ejection, or CME, into space, the bulk of the CME is due to pass north of the sun-Earth line. However, a faint Earth-directed component could deliver a glancing blow to our planet’s magnetic field on April 1-2, producing beautiful auroras or northern lights.
Deborah Byrd created the EarthSky radio series in 1991 and EarthSky.org in 1994. Today, she serves as Editor-in-Chief of this website. She has won a galaxy of awards from the broadcasting and science communities, including having an asteroid named 3505 Byrd in her honor. A science communicator and educator since 1976, Byrd believes in science as a force for good in the world and a vital tool for the 21st century. "Being an EarthSky editor is like hosting a big global party for cool nature-lovers," she says.