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A huge solar flare flashes in the middle of the sun on Sept. 6, 2017. A separate image of the Earth provides scale. NASA/GSFC/SDO

Massive sunspots and huge solar flares mean unexpected space weather for Earth

At a time in the sun's cycle when space weather experts expect less solar activity, our star is going bonkers with solar flares and coronal mass ejections. What effects will Earth feel?
An artist’s illustration of Kappa Ceti whose stellar winds are 50 times stronger than our sun’s. Any Earth-like planet would need a magnetic field to protect its atmosphere if it was to stand a chance of hosting life. M. Weiss/CfA

What the ‘weather’ is like on a star can help in the search for life

In the search for life on other planets in the universe we need to find the right kind of star, and it needs to have the right kind of space weather.
It’s a storm, but not as we know it. NASA

Why we’re preparing weather forecasts … in space

We’ve all been caught out by a thunderstorm or freezing winter morning down on planet Earth, but up in space things are rather different. Fluctuations in the weather up there won’t make you cold or damp…
A US Chinook similar to the one involved in the gun battle of Takur Ghar. Flickr/The U S Army

Bad space weather may have caused fatal Afghan gun battle

Three American soldiers* may have died in Afghanistan’s battle of Takur Ghar because of disruptions caused by plasma bubbles – a form of space weather – according to a new study. Space weather is normally…

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