Jump to Main ContentJump to Primary Navigation
Top

The Sun: One year in one image

sun-hero.png

This stunning image shows one year's activity on the Sun.

The composite of 25 separate images spans the period of 16 April 2012, to 15 April 2013.

In the three years since it first provided images of the sun in the spring of 2010, NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory has had virtually unbroken coverage of the sun's rise toward solar maximum, the peak of solar activity in its regular 11-year cycle.

SDO's Atmospheric Imaging Assembly captures a shot of the sun every 12 seconds in 10 different wavelengths and reveals the zones on the sun where active regions are most common during this part of the solar cycle.

Try this out (this is nothing to do with NASA, this is just us messing with your eyes). Stare at this gif for 30 seconds then stare at the sun again. Pretty cool.

Okay, back to NASA stuff. A video of the activity shows that the sun subtly increases and decreases in apparent size. This is because the distance between the SDO spacecraft and the sun varies over time.

Image: NASA/GSFC/SDO/Rex Features

Related

bathing-bad.png

Bathing Bad

Whiskey HERO.jpg

Smell Like Whiskey

ZZtopHERO.jpg

Best Beards in Music

HERO1.jpg

The definitive 20 Best Moustaches in Music

beard hero.jpg

Beards and their perfect font partners

SIR_IAN_MCKELLEN_CTR57209.jpg

50 Best Hollywood Beards

Comments

More

If your name is on this list, you’re probably an actual Viking

Does this give you a licence to pillage? Probably

by Gary Ogden
27 Apr 2017

The public voted on how to make toast and got it completely wrong

People cannot be trusted on ANYTHING

by Dave Fawbert
27 Apr 2017

Tom Watson MP on the political motivations of cinema despots

The deputy leader of the Labour Party assesses eight screen tyrants

by Ralph Jones
27 Apr 2017

We went hunting for ancient gold off the Welsh coast

Hunting for nuggets from the doomed Royal Charter

by Ralph Jones
27 Apr 2017

London Marathon hero has had his entry fee next year covered

Yeah, they can probably call it even now

by Matt Tate
26 Apr 2017

Inside the dark art of (actually decent) sports headline puns

An enduring British pastime - but why?

by Tom Usher
26 Apr 2017

Oh great, now Paul Nuttall's comparing himself to Gandhi

Mate, that's not how it works

by Tom Victor
26 Apr 2017

Jeremy Corbyn would be Prime Minister if only under-40s could vote

But they're 20 points behind overall

by Gary Ogden
26 Apr 2017

Wild boars have joined the war against ISIS

A herd of stampeding pigs reportedly kills three Islamic State militants

by Tom Mendelsohn
26 Apr 2017

United Airlines have now killed a giant rabbit

Could it get any worse?

by Dave Fawbert
26 Apr 2017