The video: Remember February's solar flares that threatened to knock out our communication systems here on earth? Well, NASA caught one on tape last week (see the video below), recording it from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) spacecraft using extreme ultraviolent light. The dramatic flare can be seen spurting out a fiery prominence thousands of miles long. Although serious solar flares can pose a threat to earth, this one was not pointed in our direction.
The reaction: This "incredible" footage almost defies comprehension, says Phil Plait at Discover, especially when you consider that "the entire Earth would be a smallish dot on this scale." The super-HD images sent back by the SDO mean "we can zoom in on the action and still see exquisite details," says Jesus Diaz at Gizmodo. It's a "jaw-dropping solar show." Watch it for yourself here:
THE WEEK'S AUDIOPHILE PODCASTS: LISTEN SMARTER
- 43 TV shows to watch in 2014
- How to be the most productive person in your office — and still get home by 5:30 p.m.
- Why the Chinese military is only a paper dragon
- How our botched understanding of 'science' ruins everything
- 6 things the happiest families all have in common
- 10 innovative furniture designs that brilliantly save you space
- Christian conservatives have a terrifying new bogeyman: The Christian leftist
- What the Romney boomlet says about the establishment GOP's feeble 2016 field
- 5 innovative uses for baking soda
- Mutant powers: What a DNA test can tell you about yourself
Subscribe to the Week