Pick of The Week
 
 

Flash on the Limb (Janury 15, 2003)

  • Higher resolution version (TIF,2.2M) without Earth (TIF,2.2M)
  • A bright, flashing eruption on the edge of the Sun was caught in extreme ultraviolet light by the EIT 304┼ instrument on 12 January 2003. A spectral line of singly-ionized helium at 304 ┼ngstroms shows the state of the solar plasma at roughly 60,000 C. The source of the event was not apparent, and it probably originated from the far side of the Sun. None of the instruments on SOHO, however, saw any evidence of a full-fledged coronal mass ejection. So we are left to conclude that this was, despite its flashy appearance, a relatively minor event, just a flash in the pan as it were. Even so, this "small" event still dwarfs the size of the Earth many times over.

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