|One of the most spectacular solar sights is an erupting prominence.
Two weeks ago, NASA's Sun-orbiting
Solar Dynamic Observatory spacecraft imaged an
impressively large prominence
erupting from the surface.
The dramatic explosion was captured in ultraviolet light in the
above time lapse video covering 90 minutes,
where a new frame was taken every 24 seconds.
The scale of the prominence is huge -- the entire Earth would easily fit under the flowing
curtain of hot gas.
A solar prominence is channeled and sometimes held above the
Sun's surface by the Sun's
A quiescent prominence typically lasts about a month, and may erupt in a
Coronal Mass Ejection (CME)
expelling hot gas into the
The energy mechanism that creates a
solar prominence is still a topic of
As the Sun progresses toward
in the next few years,
solar activity like
eruptive prominences are expected to become more common.
NASA/Goddard/SDO AIA Team