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Sun’s surface May 18, 2010 | by NASA Goddard Photo and Video
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Sun’s surface May 18, 2010

Dark Filament

This SDO close-up of a filament and active region, taken in extreme UV light, shows a dark and elongated filament hovering above the Sun’s surface (May 18, 2010). The bright regions beneath it, which show where heating is going on in the magnetic field, send up shafts of plasma that trace magnetic field lines emerging from them. Filaments are cooler clouds of gas that are suspended by tenuous magnetic fields. They are often unstable and commonly erupt. This one is estimated to be at least 60 Earth diameters long (about 500,000 miles).


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NASA Goddard Space Flight Center is home to the nation's largest organization of combined scientists, engineers and technologists that build spacecraft, instruments and new technology to study the Earth, the sun, our solar system, and the universe.

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Uploaded on June 21, 2010