Active sunspot AR1504 is facing Earth and hurling coronal mass ejections (CMEs) in our direction.
On June 14th, for the second day in a row, sunspot AR1504 erupted and hurled a CME toward Earth.
The fast-moving (1360 km/s) cloud is expected to sweep up a previous CME and deliver a combined blow to Earth’s magnetic field on June 16th around 10:16 UT.
This animation shows the likely progression of the approaching storm:
According to the forecast track prepared by analysts at the Goddard Space Weather Lab, the CMEs will also hit Venus on June 15th and Mars on June 19th. Because Venus and Mars do not have global magnetic fields to protect them, both of those planets will probably lose tiny amounts of atmosphere when the CMEs strike.
Here on Earth, the impact is likely to trigger a geomagnetic storm around the poles. High-latitude sky watchers should be alert for auroras on June 16th.