Hinode X-ray image of the sun

The Sun on October 28

The sun rose and set on October 28. What could be more peaceful or re-assuring? But largely unsuspected, on that day the sun was torn by huge magnetic storms, ejections of matter, shocks, and the emission of deadly radiation. Largely unsuspected, that is, except to the X-ray Telescope on the Hinode solar observatory, which obtained the above picture X-ray of our sun on that day. Hinode's extraordinary resolution shows for the first time that bright spots near the solar disk are actually composed of amazing loops of magnetic force, and shows the striking appearance of the north and south solar poles at the top and bottom of the image. These X-ray images, movies and data from Hinode's other instruments (the Solar Optical Telescope and the EUV Imaging Spectrometer) help astronomers understand the solar cycle, and how solar storms form.

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Each week the HEASARC brings you new, exciting and beautiful images from X-ray and Gamma ray astronomy. Check back each week and be sure to check out the HEAPOW archive!

Page Author: Dr. Michael F. Corcoran
Last modified Wednesday, 19-Mar-2014 21:44:11 EDT