A recent explosion on the sun’s surface was caught by NASA’s high-tech cameras. The images are so spectacular some scientists refer to the event as a solar ballet. You can see the video of the explosion here.
The high-flying explosion
According to LiveScience.com, the explosion shot super-hot plasma into the atmosphere for about four hours. The plasma shot so high NASA experts say “it could tower over 20 Earths.”
“Magnetic forces drove the flow of plasma, but without sufficient force to overcome the sun’s gravity much of the plasma fell back into the sun,” NASA officials wrote in an image description.
“The length of the eruption extends about 160,000 miles out from the sun. With Earth about 7,900 miles in diameter, this relatively minor eruption is about 20 times the diameter of our planet.”
Not the sun’s first fiery episode
While the sheer size of this explosion is impressive, scientists say it’s not the biggest show the sun has put on. Still, it was enough to cause concern. A strong solar storm could effect satellite communications.
“The concern of a strong solar flare in the direction of Earth is legit. The possibility that such a Sun burst could hit Earth could cause extensive damage as it would charge-up our electrical equipment and destroy them,” Professor Jose Lopez, a physicist at Seton Hall University.
In the end, no communication was interrupted.
Future sun forecast
The sun is currently in an active period, according to Fox News. This year could mark frequent sun storms, but predicting these storms isn’t easy.
“Solar weather forecasting is trickier than earth weather forecasting. Further, the entire solar weather process is not fully understood,” Lopez told FoxNews.com.
“And predicting the future is unfortunately something that science can’t do. Science can give us some potential scenarios of things that might happen, but who knows?”
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