AJ-the-amateur-astronomer sent along this article describing sun flares that ocurred this past Tuesday and how they “were accompanied by a coronal mass ejection, or CME, which is a cloud of hot charged particles that moves at high speed outward from the Sun’s surface. The flares are seen first, as the light and radiation take only eight minutes to get to Earth. The CME moves slower and takes days, in the same way that thunder follows lightning.”
The dudes who know, NASA, say that “flares can affect Earth’s ionosphere, through which high frequency radio waves travel, and cause radio blackouts.” We were not effected, luckily.
The article goes on to describe that “Early models suggest that both the CMEs will not travel directly toward Earth but perhaps just graze our atmosphere in the North, delivering a glancing blow to Earth’s magnetic field, and could cause auroras in the northern latitudes between Sept. 8 – 10.”