Wednesday, February 07, 2007

Angry Sol?

This image, made by the SOHO observatory (see here), which orbits the Sun at a point inside the earth's orbit, shows a coronal mass ejection. Events like this, in which the Sun violently expels some mass, occur from time to time, with the frequency varying cyclically. When bubbles of magnetic plasma ejected in these events reach the earth, they can interfere with many forms of electromagnetic data transmission.

This image was taken from Astronomy Picture of the Day.