Strong Proton Storm (January 10, 2014)
Hi-res TIF ( 12M)
A solar magnetic active region containing the largest sunspot group of the last 10 years unleashed a large (X1.2) flare when it was facing right towards Earth.
The flare was associated with a bright coronal mass ejection that emerges from the lower right (Jan. 7-8, 2014). A fast moving cloud of high-energy particles produced in the flare and at the CME front began striking the SOHO spacecraft imagers, creating the "snow" effect that went on for more than a day.
SOHO is a million miles sunwards of Earth, and outside the earth's protective magnetosphere. In these coronagraph images the Sun is represented by the white circle and is blocked by an occulting disk, so we can observe fainter structures in the Sun's corona. Venus (upper left) enters the field of view during the video clip, while Mercury (lower left) is just about to leave the file of view.
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.
If your institution would also like to receive the same Weekly Pick from us for display (usually in Photoshop or QuickTime format), please send your inquiry to firstname.lastname@example.org.