NASA releases mesmerizing 10-year timelapse footage of sun
NASA released timelapse footage of the sun over the past 10 years to celebrate their Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), which has monitored the sun for over a decade, according to their YouTube account.
“From its orbit in space around Earth, SDO has gathered 425 million high-resolution images of the sun, amassing 20 million gigabytes of data over the past 10 years,” NASA said.
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The information gathered from the constant observation of the sun has enabled many new discoveries and how this life-giving star works, according to NASA.
“The Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) instrument alone captures images every 12 seconds at 10 different wavelengths of light,” NASA continued. “This 10-year time lapse showcases photos taken at a wavelength of 17.1 nanometers, which is an extreme ultraviolet wavelength that shows the sun’s outermost atmospheric layer — the corona. Compiling one photo every hour, the movie condenses a decade of the sun into 61 minutes.”
During the timelapse, there are parts where the sun is not visible and these moments are due to the Earth or the moon eclipsing SDO as they pass between the spacecraft and the sun.
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Here are some notable moments NASA documented in the video:
- 6:20 June 7, 2011-- A massive prominence eruption explodes from the lower right of the sun.
-12:24 June 5, 2012-- The transit of Venus across the face of the sun. Won’t happen again until 2117.
-13:06 July 19, 2012-- A complex loop of magnetic fields and plasma forms and lasts for hours.
-13:50 Aug. 31, 2012-- The most iconic eruption of this solar cycle bursts from the lower left of the sun.
-20:25 Sept. 29, 2013-- A prominence eruption forms a long 'canyon’ that is then covered with loops of plasma.
-26:39 Oct. 8, 2014-- Active regions on the sun resemble a jack o’ lantern just in time for Halloween.
-36:18 May 9, 2016-- Mercury transits across the face of the sun. Smaller and more distant than Venus it is hard to spot.
-43:20 July 5, 2017-- A large sunspot group spends two weeks crossing the face of the sun.
-44:20 Sept. 6, 2017-- The most powerful sequence of flares during this solar cycle crackle for several days, peaking at X9.3.
-57:38 Nov. 11, 2019-- Mercury transits the Sun once more for SDO. The next transit won’t be until 2032.
To watch the full video, visit NASA’s YouTube account.
Storyful contributed to this report.