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For years now, a satellite in space has been snapping pictures of the Sun for science, and now NASA is presenting a collection of those images in a new 4K ultra-high-definition movie that is sure to amaze.
OUT OF THIS WORLD | What's Up In Space

NASA wows with incredible ultra-high-def views of the Sun


Scott Sutherland
Meteorologist/Science Writer

Wednesday, November 4, 2015, 6:23 PM - For years now, a satellite in space has been snapping pictures of the Sun for science, and now NASA is presenting a collection of those images in a new 4K ultra-high-definition movie that is sure to amaze.

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) has been keeping an unblinking eye on our parent star since early 2010, providing a rich resource for solar scientists and the public alike, as it presents the fascinating array of activity that tracks across the face of the Sun every day.

Although these images have shown up many times in various media, including science articles here on The Weather Network's website, a new video released by the NASA Goddard Scientific Visualization Studio is presenting them like they've never been seen before.

The video leading off at the top of the article shows but a small sampling of this Ultra-HD masterpiece of "Thermonuclear Art." Watch the full 30-minute video embedded below:

Note: If the video does not start off in 4K mode, click on the "gear" symbol at the lower right of the video playback, click on "Quality" in the small pop-up menu that appears and choose the highest quality available.

According to NASA Goddard:

It’s always shining, always ablaze with light and energy. In the ubiquity of solar output, Earth swims in an endless tide of particles. Every time half of the Earth faces the Sun, we experience the brightness of daytime, the Sun’s energy and light driving weather, biology and more. But in space, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) keeps an eye on our nearest star 24/7. SDO captures images of the Sun in 10 different wavelengths, each of which helps highlight a different temperature of solar material. In this video we experience images of the Sun in unprecedented detail captured by SDO. Presented in ultra-high definition video (4K) the video presents the nuclear fire of our life-giving star in intimate detail, offering new perspective into our own relationships with grand forces of the solar system.

This video features some of the most amazing views captured by SDO over the years, however there are some incredible things happening on the surface of the Sun right now.

Watch below as an immense "sunspot train" tracks its way across the Sun, from October 30 to November 4, 2015.

Looking at these sunspots through one of SDO's many camera filters - specifically the one that singles what are known as "coronal loops" - there is much more going on there than initially meets the eye.


SDO's 171 Angstrom view of Active Region 2443 on Nov 4, 2015, revealing bright coronal loops framing this magnificent sunspot train. Credit: Helioviewer/NASA/SDO

Want to see more? Check out "The Sun Now" on the website of NASA Goddard Space Flight Center, and explore the many views supplied to us by the SDO mission.

Credit: NASA Goddard | NASA SDO

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