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Solar storm barreling toward Earth this weekend

This image captured 304 Angstrom wavelength which is typically colorized red provided by NASA shows solar flare lower center erupting

This image captured in the 304 Angstrom wavelength, which is typically colorized in red provided by NASA shows a solar flare, lower center, erupting from the sun on Thursday, July 12, 2012. Space weather scientists said there should be little impact to Earth. The flare erupted from a region which rotated into view on July 6, 2012. (AP Photo/NASA)

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LOS ANGELES — A solar storm is racing toward Earth this weekend, but scientists say not to worry.

The blast of charged solar particles was due to arrive Saturday morning and shake Earth’s magnetic field. Space weather forecasters say it will be a minor event and they don’t expect disruptions to power grids or communications systems.

The storm began Thursday when the sun unleashed a huge flare that sent a stream of particles speeding toward Earth at 3 million mph.

There’s a bright side to stormy space weather: It tends to create colorful northern lights. Scientists say shimmering colorful auroras may be visible at the United States-Canada border and northern Europe this weekend.



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