torsdag 24 oktober 2013

Violent Action on the Sun

With absolutely miserable weather for stargazing up here in Tromsø lately, the sky is finally starting to clear up a bit, and today the Sun - being littered with large sunspots - is shining over the snowclad landscape here in Northern Norway.

While waiting for clear skies to appear also at night-time, I took a quick snapshot of the Sun today from my window sill - a view that is soon about to disappear from these latitudes as we are now approaching the polar darkness period when the Sun doesn't rise above the horizon at all.

Each sunspot is huge - maybe up to 50.000 km in diameter - and the entire Earth would easily fit inside the largest. The middle sunspot (AR1877) recently erupted and produced a solar flare from which strong UV radiation caused a brief HF radio blackout here on Earth today!

To learn more about the Sun and how it affects us - check out todays new book release by my co-author solar phycisist Pål Brekke (in Norwegian)

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