Drifting to the Left (May 6, 2004)
Hi-res TIF image (3.8M).
This week SOHO observed an elongated "eruptive prominence," a mass of relatively cool plasma, into space on May 3. The gas was relatively cool - only 60,000-80,000 Kelvin (110,000 - 145,000 degrees F) compared with the fiery 1.5 million degree K plasma (2.7 million F) surrounding it in the Sun's outer atmosphere, or corona. The image was taken by the EIT 304Å instrument which images the Sun in extreme ultraviolet light.
The eruption was associated with several coronal mass ejections that were also observed that day with SOHO's coronagraph instruments. Eruptive prominences of this size are often associated with coronal mass ejections (CME's). The prominence and associated coronal mass ejection appeared to originate around the Sun's edge (thus, on the backside) and headed out into space.
SOHO began its Weekly Pick some time after sending a weekly image or video clip to the American Museum of Natural History (Rose Center) in New York City. There, the SOHO Weekly Pick is displayed with some annotations on a large plasma display.
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