End of Summer Fireworks (August 31, 2012)
Hi-res TIF (2.9M)
The Sun blasted out at least 16 coronal mass ejections (CMEs) in eight days (Aug. 20-27, 2012) as observed by a coronagraph on the STEREO (Ahead) spacecraft. These came from several active regions on the Sun. The cascading clouds of particles are visually impressive and impressive in scope: the average CME carries about a billion tons of particles into space at over one million miles per hour. This pace is another signal that the Sun is approaching its maximum period of activity. The video clip consists of over 900 frames: a cadence of an image every 15 minutes.
Note: this view is from 2/3 of the way around the Sun's right limb, as seen from Earth, because of Ahead's current position.
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.