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The images are whole-Sun maps of magnetic activity. They show 360 degrees of longitude in the Carrington coordinate system normally used for solar observations. The map extent is from south pole to north pole in an equal area projection. The solar equator and each 60 degrees of longitude are marked.

The Earthside images are smoothed versions of magnetic flux as measured by MDI. The images are shown to 70 degrees from disk center.

The farside images are maps of wave speed variations with locations showing faster wave speed shown darker. These darker regions indicate locations where there is an accumulation of magnetic field near the surface. The farside images can only be computed out to 50 degrees from the farside disk center as (un)seen from Earth.

High-resolution TIFF image for print media.

Successive MDI images of near and far side

1 March 2001: MDI's view of the near side of the Sun: no remarkable sign of activitiy visible.

15 March 2001: 14 days later (half of a solar rotation) clear evidence for strong activity on the far side of the Sun is apparent.

28 March 2001: Another half a solar rotation later, a large active region is visible on the near side of the Sun. This region, which is now known as AR 9393, hosts the largest sunspot group to occur in 10 years.

11 April 2001: Another two weeks pass by and MDI's view of the far side of the Sun shows that AR 9393 is still bubbling away.

24 April 2001: This recent view of the near side of the Sun shows that AR 9393 is still very active.