|This photo by the ESA/NASA Solar Orbiter |
spacecraft on February 15, 2022, is the largest
solar prominence eruption ever observed in a
single image together with the full disc of the sun.
(European Space Agency photo)
If directed toward Earth, the plasma blast can disrupt radio communications and – if strong enough – damage satellites and even damage electrical grids on the surface. (A flare can also result in stronger than usual auroras, a boon to weak-signal VHF enthusiasts.) This flare, fortunately, was directed away from the Earth, but the rising sunspot cycle is likely to result in more flares as solar activity "heats up" over the next few years.