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SDO Observes Fast-Growing Sunspot

As magnetic fields on the sun rearrange and realign, dark spots known as sunspots can appear on its surface. Over the course of Feb. 19-20, 2013, scientists watched a giant sunspot form in under 48 hours. It has grown to over six Earth diameters across but its full extent is hard to judge since the spot lies on a sphere not a flat disk.

The spot quickly evolved into what's called a delta region, in which the lighter areas around the sunspot, the penumbra, exhibit magnetic fields that point in the opposite direction of those fields in the center, dark area. This is a fairly unstable configuration that scientists know can lead to eruptions of radiation on the sun called solar flares.

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More information on this topic available at:
http://www.nasa.gov/mission_pages/sdo/news/fastgrowing-sunspot.html

The bottom two black spots on the sun, known as sunspots, appeared quickly over the course of Feb. 19-20, 2013. These two sunspots are part of the same system and are over six Earths across. This image combines images from two instruments on NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO): the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI), which takes pictures in visible light that show sunspots and the Advanced Imaging Assembly (AIA), which took an image in the 304 Angstrom wavelength showing the lower atmosphere of the sun, which is colorized in red. Credit: NASA/SDO/AIA/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center    The bottom two black spots on the sun, known as sunspots, appeared quickly over the course of Feb. 19-20, 2013. These two sunspots are part of the same system and are over six Earths across. This image combines images from two instruments on NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO): the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI), which takes pictures in visible light that show sunspots and the Advanced Imaging Assembly (AIA), which took an image in the 304 Angstrom wavelength showing the lower atmosphere of the sun, which is colorized in red.

Credit: NASA/SDO/AIA/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center

Available formats:
  1024 x 768       TIFF       3 MB
  1024 x 768       JPEG   301 KB
  320 x 180         PNG     117 KB


Wider version of image.  The bottom two black spots on the sun, known as sunspots, appeared quickly over the course of Feb. 19-20, 2013. These two sunspots are part of the same system and are over six Earths across. This image combines images from two instruments on NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO): the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI), which takes pictures in visible light that show sunspots and the Advanced Imaging Assembly (AIA), which took an image in the 304 Angstrom wavelength showing the lower atmosphere of the sun, which is colorized in red. Credit: NASA/SDO/AIA/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center    Wider version of image. The bottom two black spots on the sun, known as sunspots, appeared quickly over the course of Feb. 19-20, 2013. These two sunspots are part of the same system and are over six Earths across. This image combines images from two instruments on NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO): the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI), which takes pictures in visible light that show sunspots and the Advanced Imaging Assembly (AIA), which took an image in the 304 Angstrom wavelength showing the lower atmosphere of the sun, which is colorized in red.

Credit: NASA/SDO/AIA/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center

Available formats:
  1920 x 1080     TIFF       7 MB
  1920 x 1080     JPEG       1 MB


Full Disk image at full SDO resolution.  This image combines images from two instruments on NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO): the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI), which takes pictures in visible light that show sunspots and the Advanced Imaging Assembly (AIA), which took an image in the 304 Angstrom wavelength showing the lower atmosphere of the sun, which is colorized in red. Credit: NASA/SDO/AIA/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center    Full Disk image at full SDO resolution. This image combines images from two instruments on NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO): the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI), which takes pictures in visible light that show sunspots and the Advanced Imaging Assembly (AIA), which took an image in the 304 Angstrom wavelength showing the lower atmosphere of the sun, which is colorized in red.

Credit: NASA/SDO/AIA/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center

Available formats:
  4096 x 4096     TIFF     40 MB


Full disk, full resolution image of sun the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI), which takes pictures in visible light that show sunspots. Credit: NASA/SDO/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center    Full disk, full resolution image of sun the Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager (HMI), which takes pictures in visible light that show sunspots.

Credit: NASA/SDO/HMI/Goddard Space Flight Center

Available formats:
  4096 x 4096     JPEG       3 MB

Short URL to This Page:http://svs.gsfc.nasa.gov/goto?11211
Animation Number:11211
Completed:2013-02-22
Animator:Scott Wiessinger (USRA) (Lead)
Producer:Scott Wiessinger (USRA)
Writer:Karen Fox (ASI)
Platforms/Sensors/Data Sets:SDO
 SDO/HMI/Continuum
 SDO/AIA/304 Filter
 SDO/AIA/171 Filter
 SDO/HMI/Magnetogram
Series:Heliophysics Breaking News
Goddard TV Tape:G2013-021 -- 2013 Heliophysics Breaking News
Please give credit for this item to:
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/SDO
 
Keywords:
SVS >> Solar Ultraviolet
SVS >> Sun
GCMD >> Earth Science >> Sun-earth Interactions
SVS >> Space Weather
SVS >> SDO
SVS >> Solar Dynamics Observatory
SVS >> Heliophysics
SVS >> Corona
SVS >> Sunspot
 
 


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Many of our multimedia items use the GCMD keywords. These keywords can be found on the Internet with the following citation:
Olsen, L.M., G. Major, K. Shein, J. Scialdone, S. Ritz, T. Stevens, M. Morahan, A. Aleman, R. Vogel, S. Leicester, H. Weir, M. Meaux, S. Grebas, C.Solomon, M. Holland, T. Northcutt, R. A. Restrepo, R. Bilodeau, 2013. NASA/Global Change Master Directory (GCMD) Earth Science Keywords. Version 8.0.0.0.0

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