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What is an “X-class” solar flare?

An “X-class” solar flare is an event that occurs on the Sun, where there is a sudden and intense release of energy in the form of a rapid increase in brightness on the solar surface. X-class flares are the most powerful events that can occur on the Sun. They are usually accompanied by strong coronal mass ejections (CMEs), during which large amounts of energy and charged particles are ejected from the Sun’s corona into space.

X-class solar flares can have significant impacts on Earth and can cause strong geomagnetic storms, which can lead to disruptions in electronics and communications, as well as damage to satellites and power grids.

X-class solar flares are usually classified by a number, which indicates the peak brightness in the X-ray spectrum. For example, an X1 flare has less power than an X2 flare and so on. There are also higher classes, such as X5 and X10, which indicate even more powerful flares.

Observations and predictions of solar activity and X-class flares are conducted using various instruments such as solar observatories and satellites. This allows scientific and civil organizations to warn about the possible consequences of such events and to take measures to protect against them.

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