Solar Power

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This video taken by the SOHO (Solar and Heliospheric Observatory) spacecraft, a joint project by NASA and the European Space Agency, shows a large bright active region on the Sun rotating into view on November 13. These areas, many times larger than Earth, expel large amounts of solar material and energy in the form of solar flares, and will sometimes result in CMEs (coronal mass ejections).

In addition to the bright area, watch for the activity just to the north of it, at the Sun’s 10-o’clock position. Some very nice prominences erupting there as well. 🙂

The video below, an animation made up of time-lapse images taken by SOHO’s LASCO (Large Angle Spectrometric Coronagraph) imaging instrument, shows the activity of the Sun’s outer atmosphere – the corona – as it continuously streams solar material into space. It can observe this in much the same way that the corona can be seen during an eclipse: by blocking out the bright disk of the Sun in the center. Watch for three large ejections of the corona on either side of the Sun in the animation, two on the right and then one on the left.

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These are both amazing – but typical – demonstrations of the power of the Sun, the giant nuclear reactor at the center of our solar system that makes life on Earth possible.


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One Comment

  1. Interesting post. I have stumbled this for my friends. Hope others find it as interesting as I did.


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