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A Massive Hole In the Sun May Cause Dazzling Light Show Here On Earth NASA says the coronal hole could blast the Earth with solar winds as early as Friday. What does this mean?

By Jonathan Small

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NASA's Solar Dynamic Observatory has detected a hole in the sun that produced high-speed solar winds forecast to slam Earth on March 24.

But don't panic—it's fine to look up. These solar holes and rapid-fire winds are relatively normal, although this particular hole is bigger than usual.

What does this mean for us Earthians? Expect to see a crazy light show of auroral displays, or Northern Lights, as far south as New York and Idaho, according to spaceweather.com.

"When the high-speed wind reaches Earth, the particles and the magnetic field it carries will interact with Earth's magnetic field, effectively rattling it or like ringing a bell," Alex Young, the associate director for science at NASA Goddard's Heliophysics Science Division, told Insider.

Really strong solar storms will occasionally short out satellites or affect electrical power supplies.

In 1989, the entire province of Quebec, Canada, experienced a blackout as a result of a solar storm.

What is a coronal hole?

The coronal "hole," which is 25 to 30 times the size of the earth, is actually not a hole at all but rather an opening in the sun's magnetic field. These regions are darker because they're cooler and less dense than the rest of the sun.

This unusual magnetic field allows solar winds to escape, resulting in streams of fast solar wind, often referred to as high-speed streams.

Jonathan Small

Entrepreneur Leadership Network® VIP

Founder, Write About Now Media

Jonathan Small is an award-winning author, journalist, producer, and podcast host. For 25 years, he has worked as a sought-after storyteller for top media companies such as The New York Times, Hearst, Entrepreneur, and Condé Nast. He has held executive roles at Glamour, Fitness, and Entrepreneur and regularly contributes to The New York Times, TV Guide, Cosmo, Details, Maxim, and Good Housekeeping. He is the former “Jake” advice columnist for Glamour magazine and the “Guy Guru” at Cosmo.

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