Epic Filament Eruption (December 11, 2010)
Hi-res TIF image (2.9M)
A very long solar filament that had been snaking around the Sun erupted (Dec. 6, 2010) with a flourish. STEREO (Behind) caught the action in dramatic detail in extreme ultraviolet light of Helium. It had been almost a million km long (about half a solar radius) and a prominent feature on the Sun visible over two weeks earlier before it rotated out of view. Filaments, elongated clouds of cooler gases suspended above the Sun by magnetic forces, are rather unstable and often break away from the Sun. Other images and video clips of this event as seen by Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) can be seen here.
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.