Superflares are very strong explosions observed on solar-like stars with energy production rates at levels one million times or more that of typical solar-like flares. It has been suggested that these eruptions may be produced by the interaction of the star's magnetic field with the magnetic field of a putative Jupiter-like planet.
As of 2000[update], nine superflare stars have been found, some of them similar to the Sun. The energy released during such a flare is 100 times to 10 million times that of the sun's largest coronal mass ejections.
Superflares increase the brightness of the star by up to 20 times its normal brightness and the luminosity by 1,000 times. They may last from a few hours to a week. If the Sun were to release a superflare, it would make a winter day as warm as a summer day. The ozone layer of the Earth might be destroyed by the intense flow of charged particles produced by such a flare, and surface ice would melt on the daylight side of moons as distant from the sun as those of Jupiter, freezing again after the flare faded away. There is no evidence of superflares ever having occurred in the Solar System.
In the film, Knowing (2009), the world was destroyed by a superflare in a story that was loosely based on parts of the Bible.
- Rubenstein, Eric P.; Schaefer, Bradley E. (2000/02). "Are Superflares on Solar Analogues Caused by Extrasolar Planets?". The Astrophysical Journal (http://adsabs.harvard.edu/cgi-bin/nph-bib_query?bibcode=2000ApJ...529.1031R&db_key=AST&high=38e0b7728728235: American Astronomical Society) 529 (2): 1031–1033. arXiv:astro-ph/9909187. Bibcode:2000ApJ...529.1031R. doi:10.1086/308326. Lay summary – Groombridge 1830.
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