A strong Earth-directed X-flare, the biggest of the year, erupted from a large active region on the sun, causes radio blackouts on Earth
Above: X2.2-class solar flare, along with the Earth for scale. Image credit NASA/Solar Dynamics Observatory
The flare from sun’s large active region AR2297, happened on March 11, 2015 at 16:22 UTC.
In New Mexico, amateur radio astronomer Thomas Ashcraft was observing the sun, when the flare occured. He said:
“The X-flare scrambled the ionosphere thoroughly so that no decametric radio signals were supported in my part of the world. The ionosphere started to reform after about fifteen minutes when stations began to reappear. (The stuff visible during the blackout was my own observatory electricity. Nothing exterior).”