Closer than ever: Solar Orbiter’s first views of the Sun

Thursday, July 16, 2020 - 07:30 in Astronomy & Space

Video: 00:01:29 The first images from ESA’s Solar Orbiter are already exceeding expectations and revealing interesting new phenomena on the Sun. This animation combines a series of views captured with several remote-sensing instruments on Solar Orbiter between 30 May and 21 June 2020, when the spacecraft was roughly halfway between the Earth and the Sun – closer to the Sun than any other solar telescope has ever been before. The red and yellow images were taken with the Extreme Ultraviolet Imager (EUI) in the extreme ultraviolet region of the electromagnetic spectrum, at wavelengths of 30 and 17 nanometers, respectively.The close-up views by EUI show the upper atmosphere of the Sun, or corona, with a temperature of around 1 million degrees. With the power to see features in the solar corona of only 400 km across, these images reveal a multitude of small flaring loops, erupting bright spots and dark, moving fibrils. A ubiquitous...

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