Astronomy Picture of the Day

A Large Tsunami Shock Wave on the Sun

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#97074 by @ 14.12.2006 00:00 - nach oben -
A Large Tsunami Shock Wave on the Sun

Tsunamis this large don't happen on Earth.

One week ago, a large solar flare from an Earth-sized
sunspot produced a
shock wave that was spectacular even for the Sun.

Pictured above, the
tsunami wave was captured moving out from active region AR 10930 by the
Optical Solar Patrol Network
(OSPAN) telescope in
New Mexico,

The resulting
shock wave, known technically as a
Moreton wave, compressed and heated up gasses including
hydrogen in the
of the Sun, causing a momentarily brighter glow.

above image
was taken in a
very specific red color
emitted exclusively by hydrogen gas.

The rampaging tsunami took out some active
filaments on the Sun,
although many re-established themselves later.

The solar tsunami spread at nearly one million kilometers per hour,
and circled the entire
Sun in a matter of minutes.

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