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Giant Sun Eruption Captured in NASA Video
space.com ^ | 17 November 2012 Time: 09:27 AM ET | Tariq Malik, SPACE.com Managing Editor

Posted on 11/18/2012 5:34:39 PM PST by Ernest_at_the_Beach

The sun unleashed a monster eruption of super-hot plasma Friday (Nov. 16) in back-to-back solar storms captured on camera by a NASA spacecraft.

The giant sun eruption, called a solar prominence, occurred at 1 a.m. EST (0600 GMT), with another event flaring up four hours later. The prominences was so large, it expanded beyond the camera view of NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO), which captured high-definition video of the solar eruption.

This still shows the sun as it erupted with two prominence eruptions, one after the other over a four-hour period (Nov. 16, 2012).
This still shows the sun as it erupted with two prominence eruptions, one after the other over a four-hour period (Nov. 16, 2012). NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory spacecraft captured the view.
CREDIT: NASA/SDO/Steele Hill

In the video, a colossal loop of glowing red plasma erupts from the lower left of the sun, arcing up and out of frame as it blasts away from the star.

"The red-glowing looped material is plasma, a hot gas made of electrically charged hydrogen and helium," officials with NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, which oversees the SDO mission, explained in a description. "The prominence plasma flows along a tangled and twisted structure of magnetic fields generated by the sun’s internal dynamo. An erupting prominence occurs when such a structure becomes unstable and bursts outward, releasing the plasma."

Friday's solar eruption does not appear to be aimed at Earth, so will likely have little effect on our planet. But that was not the case earlier this week when a powerful solar flare erupted on Monday (Nov. 12). That flare registered as an M6-class eruption, a moderate but still intense solar event.

On Tuesday and Wednesday (Nov. 13 and 14), space weather conditions sparked a geomagnetic storm that supercharged the Earth's auroras, creating spectacular northern lights displays for observers at high latitudes.

When aimed directly at Earth, the most powerful solar flares and eruptions can pose a threat to satellites and astronauts in orbit, and also interfere with communication, navigation and power systems on the ground.

The sun is currently in the middle of an active phase of its 11-year solar weather cycle. The current cycle is called Solar Cycle 24 and is expected to peak in 2013.

Editor's note: If you snap an amazing photo of the northern lights created by recent sun flares, or any other sky object, and you'd like to share it for a possible story or image gallery, send images, comments and location information to managing editor Tariq Malik at tmalik@space.com.

You can follow SPACE.com Managing Editor Tariq Malik on Twitter @tariqjmalik and SPACE.com on Twitter @Spacedotcom. We're also on Facebook & Google+.

Solar Quiz: How Well Do You Know Our Sun?

Many of us take the sun for granted, giving it little thought until it scorches our skin or gets in our eyes. But our star is a fascinating and complex object, a gigantic fusion reactor that gives us life. How much do you know about the sun?

This image, captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) on March 10, 2012, shows an active region on the sun, seen as the bright spot to the right. Designated AR 1429, the spot has so far produced three X-class flares and numerous M-class flares.

0 of 10 questions complete

Solar Quiz: How Well Do You Know Our Sun?

Many of us take the sun for granted, giving it little thought until it scorches our skin or gets in our eyes. But our star is a fascinating and complex object, a gigantic fusion reactor that gives us life. How much do you know about the sun?

This image, captured by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) on March 10, 2012, shows an active region on the sun, seen as the bright spot to the right. Designated AR 1429, the spot has so far produced three X-class flares and numerous M-class flares.

0 of 10 questions complete

27


TOPICS: Astronomy
KEYWORDS: sun

1 posted on 11/18/2012 5:34:47 PM PST by Ernest_at_the_Beach
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

2 days of red beans and rice. Lots of eruptions around here today.


2 posted on 11/18/2012 5:36:55 PM PST by cripplecreek (REMEMBER THE RIVER RAISIN!)
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To: SunkenCiv
Video

H/T to the Drudge Report.

3 posted on 11/18/2012 5:38:14 PM PST by Ernest_at_the_Beach ((The Global Warming Hoax was a Criminal Act....where is Al Gore?))
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

So, are we now seeing increased solar activity which has been subdued for awhile?

Will that affect our winter weather?


4 posted on 11/18/2012 5:38:22 PM PST by ROCKLOBSTER (Celebrate "Republicans Freed the Slaves" Month)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

ARE WE ALL GONNA DIE!!!


5 posted on 11/18/2012 5:39:24 PM PST by ROCKLOBSTER (Celebrate "Republicans Freed the Slaves" Month)
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To: ROCKLOBSTER

Mayan Calendar says we have at least a month left ... Not to worry.


6 posted on 11/18/2012 5:44:14 PM PST by Squantos ( Be polite, be professional, but have a plan to kill everyone you meet ...)
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To: ROCKLOBSTER

7 posted on 11/18/2012 5:52:15 PM PST by BenLurkin (This is not a statement of fact. It is either opinion or satire; or both)
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To: ROCKLOBSTER

These flares have been getting bigger and bigger and next year is the apex of the cycle. When a flare shoots off it goes in a straight line, no deviation, so one knows where it is going. If it’s path is directed at earth, we will get it.

If we get past 2013 without getting a major burst that destroys our electrical system, maybe we will be okay. That doesn’t guarantee we won’t get a big one the next year but at least we would have made it through the most active year of 2013.

I read up on an EMT from this and also from a nuclear bomb going off over the country and found that a sun EMT is less destructive because it stays in that straight line, and is pulled into the electric system. You car would likely work and so would any electronic equipment IF IT WAS NOT PLUGGED IN when this happens.

A bomb EMT, however, is spread out and corrupts everything, plugged in or not.


8 posted on 11/18/2012 5:58:22 PM PST by Marcella (When the people find that they can vote themselves money, that will herald the end of the republic.)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; SunkenCiv

Awesome!


9 posted on 11/18/2012 6:22:04 PM PST by onyx (FREE REPUBLIC IS HERE TO STAY! DONATE MONTHLY! IF YOU WANT ON SARAH PALIN''S PING LIST, LET ME KNOW)
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To: onyx
I would venture that this eruption of the Sun was caused by overpopulation. Only going green and reducing our outrageous use of fossil fuels, while we decrease the number of cattle and human beings will allow the Sun to cool sufficiently enough to decrease such eruptions and save Mother Earth for the cockroaches and salamanders and other worthy inhabitants. Let us tax carbon use and send the money to Al Gore.
10 posted on 11/18/2012 7:05:44 PM PST by cotton
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To: cotton

My theory is just as valid it was caused by liberalism and we must reduce the liberal population until the sun settles down


11 posted on 11/18/2012 7:07:00 PM PST by GeronL (http://asspos.blogspot.com)
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To: GeronL

Amen!


12 posted on 11/18/2012 7:41:01 PM PST by cotton
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

The Sun. The real cause of Global Warming.


13 posted on 11/18/2012 8:12:22 PM PST by Slyfox
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach

GREAT Images! Thanks!


14 posted on 11/18/2012 8:26:21 PM PST by Graewoulf ((Traitor John Roberts' Obama"care" violates Sherman Anti-Trust Law, AND the U.S. Constitution.))
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To: cripplecreek

Let ‘em soak overnight in water with about 1 tsp of salt added. It helps!


15 posted on 11/18/2012 8:38:43 PM PST by Errant
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To: cripplecreek
" 2 days of red beans and rice. Lots of eruptions around here today. "

Ahhh yes, breaking wind,, let the wind blow.

Best is baked beans.
16 posted on 11/19/2012 3:23:21 AM PST by American Constitutionalist
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To: GeronL

Just think ? just the latest Solar fart is more power and energy than all of human history of using any kind of fuels.


17 posted on 11/19/2012 3:25:59 AM PST by American Constitutionalist
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; onyx; brytlea; cripplecreek; decimon; bigheadfred; KoRn; Grammy; married21; ...

Thanks Ernest and onyx, here’s an ‘extra’ for APoD members, plus an ‘extra’:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2960690/posts


18 posted on 11/19/2012 3:47:40 AM PST by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach; onyx; brytlea; cripplecreek; decimon; bigheadfred; KoRn; Grammy; married21; ...

Thanks Ernest and onyx, here’s an ‘extra’ for APoD members, plus an ‘extra’:

http://www.freerepublic.com/focus/chat/2960690/posts


19 posted on 11/19/2012 3:48:44 AM PST by SunkenCiv (https://secure.freerepublic.com/donate/)
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To: Ernest_at_the_Beach
Friday's solar eruption does not appear to be aimed at Earth, so will likely have little effect on our planet.
I beg to differ.

On Sat afternoon I was noodling around with my newest Fender Strat and Mustang III Amp and all of a sudden I got HUM, lots of hum. This can be common on Fender Strat's due to their single coil pickups, it's called '60 cycle hum'. So natch that's what I thought it was and switched from my Strat to my ES-335 that has Humbuckers -- and those PUs are IMMUNE to the dreaded 60 cycle hum. Well .... surprise, but no luck, the Hum was still there.

It had to be due to this Solar Flare as yesterday I got out my Srat, plugged it into my Mustang and there wasn't any hum (This isn't the first time I've experienced this 'anomaly').

20 posted on 11/19/2012 4:24:28 AM PST by Condor51 (Si vis pacem, para bellum.)
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To: cripplecreek

For your edification and enjoyment:

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Break_Like_the_Wind


21 posted on 11/19/2012 5:05:17 AM PST by left that other site (Worry is the Darkroom that Develops Negatives.)
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