Solar Event!

March 8, 2012 Updated Mar 8, 2012 at 10:15 AM EDT

By WKBW News

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March 8, 2012 Updated Mar 8, 2012 at 10:15 AM EDT

BUFFALO, N.Y. ( WKBW ) In what could be described as a unique weather anomaly, is a 'solar flare' going to cause any concerns with technology?

The Huffington Post reports that rays from the sun, in what is being described as a solar storm, could cause huge problems Thursday.

WASHINGTON — ( HuffingtonPost.com) The largest solar storm in five years was due to arrive on Earth early Thursday, promising to shake the globe's magnetic field while expanding the Northern Lights.

The storm started with a massive solar flare earlier in the week and grew as it raced outward from the sun, expanding like a giant soap bubble, scientists said. When it strikes, the particles will be moving at 4 million mph.

"It's hitting us right in the nose," said Joe Kunches, a scientist for the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration in Boulder, Colo.

The massive cloud of charged particles could disrupt utility grids, airline flights, satellite networks and GPS services, especially in northern areas. But the same blast could also paint colorful auroras farther from the poles than normal.

Astronomers say the sun has been relatively quiet for some time. And this storm, while strong, may seem fiercer because Earth has been lulled by several years of weak solar activity.