Happy 9th anniversary, SDO!
Nine years ago this week, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory or SDO rose into the sky atop an Atlas V rocket. Since that day, SDO has returned over 350 million images of the Sun, produced more than 3,000 scientific articles and allowed millions to see our star in a new light. Here are nine of our favorite SDO images.
1. A coronal mass ejection or CME — a giant eruption of solar material that the Sun often sends out — blew out from just around the edge of the Sun on May 1, 2013.
2. This iconic SDO image shows a long filament of solar material bursting out from the Sun on Aug. 31, 2012.
3. A good portion of the world was watching as Venus glided in front of the Sun for over six hours on June 5 - 6, 2012. SDO implemented specially planned operations to view the event in great detail. The results were the best HD views of a transit ever taken.
4. A pair of solar active regions can be seen on the limb of the sun, offering a beautiful profile of cascading loops — a line of solar particles trapped by the Sun’s magnetic field — spiraling above it on Jan. 15-16, 2012.
5. A giant eruptive event, including a major X-class flare, a coronal wave and a coronal mass ejection, or CME, erupted on Aug. 9, 2011.
6. This image is a composite of 23 separate images spanning the period of January 11, 2015, to January 21, 2016. It illustrates how the Sun’s active regions congregate around the star’s equator.
7. The Sun emitted three mid-level solar flares — giant bursts of light and radiation from the Sun — on July 22-23, 2016. The x-shape of light seen in this pic is characteristic of a solar flare.
8. Periodically, SDO’s view gets blocked, when Earth passes between it and the Sun. This image is from the Fall 2011 eclipse season. The fuzzy line around Earth shows how our planet’s atmosphere scatters the Sun’s light.
9. In this SDO image the dark regions show the site of evacuated material from a solar eruption and a flare. The large magnetic loops were formed during the flare in May 2010.
Credit: NASA/Goddard/SDO #nasagoddard #space #Sun #science #SDO #star