Scientists model the intense magnetic fields around the sun.
Magnetic field lines dance above the surface of the sun. Called coronal loops, these lines are difficult to observe from afar, since they are invisible. Scientists can observe them in two ways: by watching the visible solar material that flows along the lines or by modeling them using computer simulations. Studying these formations help us understand the way energy travels on and around the sun. The Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, or SOHO, is a sun-observing spacecraft that can measure and depict distortions in the sun’s magnetic field. Using data collected by the spacecraft, scientists created a virtual, 3D model of the field lines. Watch the video to explore the loops.