June 3, 2024 at 9:33 am

NASA Captures Extremely Rare Super-Sympathetic Solar Flares With Four Regions Simultaneously Exploding

by Michael Levanduski

Source: iflscience

While most people may only think about the sun when they are laying out and catching some rays, it can really be a terrifying object when you look a little closer.

When the sun is especially active, it can get even more concerning (especially for the experts).

NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) recently captured a very rare event.

Four separate regions of the sun erupted simultaneously in what is being called a “super-sympathetic” solar event.

Source: Pixabay

These eruptions, or sunspots, are not uncommon on their own, but having so many at a time is quite rare, according to the National Weather Service.

“Sunspots are areas where the magnetic field is about 2500 times stronger than Earth’s, much higher than anywhere else on the Sun. Because of the strong magnetic field, the magnetic pressure increases while the surrounding atmospheric pressure decreases. This in turn lowers the temperature relative to its surroundings because the concentrated magnetic field inhibits the flow of hot, new gas from the Sun’s interior to the surface.”

In the past, having two or more simultaneous sunspots was thought to be a simple coincidence, it appears that this is not the case.

A study conducted in 2002, however, revealed that the separate sunspots are actually linked by magnetic loops.

Scientists may see more of these events in the coming months as the sun enters the peak of its activity cycle, known as the solar maximum.

Source: Pexels

While sunspots are usually harmless, even when several occur at a time, they do have the potential to impact life here on Earth.

These events are what cause the aurora borealis (Northern lights), which can be very beautiful.

On the downside, they can also impact satellites and unprotected electronics on Earth, causing interference or even radio blackouts.

You can see a video of this rare event, which was produced using footage from NASA, here:

Our sun is pretty impressive!

And terrifying.

But I guess you have to take the good with the bad.

If you thought that was interesting, you might like to read about a second giant hole has opened up on the sun’s surface. Here’s what it means.