Tornado on Sun’s Surface

Astronomy From the Web: Nature, Science & Tech

Reported by Ron Dicker in The Huffington Post, USA, on September 10, 2015


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Tornadoes on Earth got nothing on this furious funnel. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory captured footage of a “complex mass of plasma” on the sun that gyrated at a temperature of 5 million degrees Fahrenheit (2,777,760 degrees Celsius).

William Pesnell, SDO project scientist, told The Huffington Post that the material in a solar tornado moves at about 10,000 mph. And this one is HUGE. Just check out a photo of the phenomenon that compares it to our little ol’ planet:

Tornado on Sun

The tornado lasted 40 hours from Sept. 1 to Sept. 3 above the sun’s surface, the observatory noted. “It was stretched and pulled back and forth by powerful magnetic forces but not ripped apart in this sequence,” according to the SDO website. “The temperature of the ionized iron particles observed in this extreme ultraviolet wavelength of light was about 2.8 million degrees [Celsius].”

In a nutshell – hot, extremely hot.

Here a look at the forming of the tornado in this mesmerizing time-lapse video:

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