Weather forecasting agencies have reported that solar winds emitted by the Sun are currently headed for Earth. According to the reports, the solar emissions escaped from a hole on the Sun's atmosphere.
Reports about the incoming solar winds were confirmed by cosmic weather forecasting site SpaceWeather.com and the Space Weather Prediction Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration (NOAA).
Latest Space Weather Forecast
According to reports, the approaching solar winds could hit Earth starting on May 19 until May 20. NOAA predicted that the solar activity could extend up to May 21. As explained by NOAA, solar winds appear as plasma that contains protons and electrons. In most cases, solar winds travel across space at speeds of about 500 to 800 kilometers per second. However, the stream of solar winds currently approaching Earth is only moving at speeds on about 350 kilometers per second.
Effect Of Solar Winds On Earth
Since solar winds carry highly-charged particles, they will most likely interact with Earth's magnetic field once they arrive. But, since Earth will only be hit by minor solar winds, SpaceWeather.com noted that the solar event would only create polar auroras in the sky. It most likely won't cause a geomagnetic storm, which is capable of disrupting radio and satellite communications.
"A minor stream of solar wind is expected to buffet Earth's magnetic field on May 19th and 20th," SpaceWeather.com stated. "The gaseous material is flowing from a small hole in the Sun's atmosphere. Geomagnetic unrest could spark polar auroras, but full-fledged geomagnetic storms are unlikely"
Sun's Coronal Hole
As noted by the site, the solar winds came from a hole in the Sun's atmosphere, which is known as a corona. According to NOAA, coronal holes emerge when regions less dense than the surrounding plasma in the corona appear. This creates an opening that allows solar winds to escape from the Sun.
"This open, magnetic field line structure allows the solar wind to escape more readily into space, resulting in streams of relatively fast solar wind and is often referred to as a high-speed stream in the context of analysis of structures in interplanetary space," the agency explained.