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The sun continuesan activesolar cycle of emitting coronal mass ejections into space with a spectacularrelease early Thursday morning.

NASA's Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) captured the eruption of a mid-level coronal mass ejection that was directed toward earth beginning at 3:36 a.m. E.D.T. on April 11th.

This solar phenomena often sendsbillions of tons of solar particles into space at incredible speeds of over 600 miles per second.

Earth directed eruptions like this one can cause geomagnetic storms when the particles hit the earth's magnetic envelope for an extended period of time.

Any harmful radiation from the event is usually blocked by the magnetosphere and atmosphere and cannot reach humans on the surface.

Astronomers say northern lights are possible this weekend over higher latitude regions as the particles arrive at Earth and somehigh frequency radio communication could be disrupted for short periods of time.

However, they say this storm is not as intense as past eruptions, although it is the strongest seen so far this year.