NASA - Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) patch.
July 12, 2017
NASA’s SDO Watches a Sunspot Turn Toward Earth
Video Credits: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/SDO/Joy Ng, producer.
An active region on the sun — an area of intense and complex magnetic fields — has rotated into view on the sun and seems to be growing rather quickly in this video captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory between July 5-11, 2017. Such sunspots are a common occurrence on the sun, but are less frequent as we head toward solar minimum, which is the period of low solar activity during its regular approximately 11-year cycle. This sunspot is the first to appear after the sun was spotless for two days, and it is the only sunspot group at this moment.
Animation above: SDO Watches a Sunspot Turn Toward Earth. Animation Credits: NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center/SDO.
Like freckles on the face of the sun, they appear to be small features, but size is relative: The dark core of this sunspot is actually larger than Earth.
Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO). Animation Credit: NASA
NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO): http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sdo/main/index.html
Animations (mentioned), Video (mentioned), Text, Credits: NASA/Rob Garner/Goddard Space Flight Center, by Lina Tran.