February 3, 2012

January 29, 2012

  • Breakaway Prominence

    A long, solar prominence that rotated into view almost two weeks ago finally became disorganized and broke away into space forming a nifty large loop as it did (Nov. 21-23, 2011). NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) watched in extreme ultraviolet light as the magnetic forces that tethered it in place gradually became unstable, the prominence began to crumble, and eventually lifted off. The Sun is becoming more active as it approaches the solar maximum expected in 2013.

  • Geo-effective Flare and Coronal Mass Ejection – Close Up

    Geo-effective Flare and Coronal Mass Ejection - Close Up

    An M8.7 (quite large) solar flare erupted from the Sun accompanied by a large coronal mass ejection (CME). The tell tale brightening of the flare early on Jan 23, 2011, was followed by a burst of particles into space, then superheated magnetic loops spun up in coils above the active region as the magnetic field began to re-organize itself. The eruption sent a stream of fast-moving, highly energetic protons toward Earth, igniting the most intense solar energetic particle storm since 2005. The fast-moving CME also was headed towards Earth where it generated wonderful displays of aurora in the higher latitudes. The video clip shows the eruption in extreme ultraviolet light and covers about nine hours of activity.


December 4, 2011

October 16, 2011

September 24, 2011

September 17, 2011