The thing that powers all that is living on Earth gets more fascinating the more we learn about it.
Things we know:
–It's big (over 1 million times the size of the Earth)
–It's hot (about 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit at its surface)
We also know what it's made out of, its mass, how far away it is, and - contrary to what my boy Aristotle used to think - we know it's the center of our solar system.
What we DON'T know is too long a list to mention here.
But the Solar Dynamics Observatory (aka SDO) is helping unravel some mysteries.
The Earth-orbiting satellite launched two years ago is providing some REALLY cool images of the solar surface.
In fact, NASA just released some of the coolest stuff I've seen.
I suppose part of the reason I'm diggin' on this so much is 'cause the swirls of fire look like TORNADOES.
Now there's no real atmospheric "weather" on the sun, so what you see here is totally different from what Dorothy had to deal with in Kansas.
Here, competing magnetic forces create the vortices where hot plasma swirls upward like a tornado or perhaps more accurately, a dust devil.
Keep in mind this video [which you can view above] is a time-lapse of 30 hours, so it has been sped up dramatically.
But consider the size and height of these hot plasma "tornadoes," just one of these is nearly large enough to engulf our entire planet Earth!
Now THAT'S some fire and brimstone baby!
What a touching story! Thank you for siarhng it along with the photo of pacific coast which is my childhood coast and will always a big piece of my heart!
OK, I'm so confused. I thought that it was just the "Greater Light" created by God during his work week. All this science stuff makes my head hurt. I'd rather listen to the artfull words of ancient middle eastern nomads. I'm gonna go stick my head back in the sand now.
The sun's a jerkwad, just like its father.
Haters! Who cares about how he wrote the article. I don't see any of you working at CNN, so shut-up. This was pretty awesome stuff regarding the sun. For all of you who want to correct this meteorologist because you are scientists, etc, go figure out some remedies for our earth..or move to another planet...bullies!
You had me at "Fire Tornado". – Ron Swanson
dont be angry because a child knows more about the sun than a meteorologist.
Who wrote this article? "....... the more we learn about it." REALLY? The sun has been creating this phenomenon since it burst into life.
There is nothing wrong with the statement that the sun gets more fascinating the more we learn about it.
YOU EPIC FAILED ENGLISH
Since everyone is picking on everything he wrote, there was something that was bugging me earlier:
"The Earth-orbiting satellite launched two years ago is providing some REALLY cool images of the solar surface"
Is it orbiting the sun or the earth? On the SDO front page it says "free flying satellite", is it the same one?
Oh man I can hear the sirens going off on sun all the way in Syria
it this already ever happended before !!!!!!
If you replace the letter D with the letter P, that will describe you well douschbag
I was only here for the Video of the sun. I'm not complaining.
It is pathetic how deperate for attention the Sun is. It always makes a spectacle of itself and then expects all of us to line up and kiss it's yellow butt. Furthermore, I object to it's constant nakedness. It needs to put something on! I'm tired of of it constantly exposing itself to everyone. I have small children and they don't need to see such filth!
"But the Solar Dynamics Laboratory (aka SDO) is helping unravel some mysteries."
It's actually called the Solar Dynamics Observatory. The first hint should be that "Laboratory" doesn't start with an "O".
There's a lot of complaining about the sophistication level of this article... but do you complainers realize that one half of all of us have IQs *under* 100? Many readers over 100 don't particularly care. So why do you?
Well said. I stand corrected..maybe there could be 2 buttons to push: one for people whose IQ is 'below' 100, and/or are OK with the simplicity of such articles, and the second button for those who would like more detail..
It is really cool that people from all walks of life are interested in this stuff – higher so-called 'IQ' or no. Keep the faith.
My apology, GaryR... my article had a link to the SDO [aka button] and I just assumed yours did. My momma always said don't assume anything.
Emeljay – I was unable to get the 'button' to access the the SDL link, hence my suggestions. But I see you followed my suggestions, and it's great that the link was apparently availabe..
wait... how would you know, after all you just admitted to having a low IQ.
Church on wed night Savannah(4) learned why Jesus waehsd the disiples feet. The teacher waehsd her (dirty) feet.I asked her what she had learned when I picked her up, the teacher prompted her Savannah why did I wash your feet. And with sweet thought she answered They were dirty!!
Actually, stuff like this, and science in general is written for 13 year olds. This is because CNN assumes (and apparently there are some 'studies' to back this up) that most people would not understand anything more sophisticated due to lack of, and/or quality of their education and overall IQ..
An easily accessible website from NASA often does the same..
I wonder what would happen if science was presented by CNN with the assumption that those interested in a site like this would actually understand on a level of high school graduates and even some college – and had an overall higher intelligence..and take for granted that people can read and access information. What would happen then..?
On the other hand, at least CNN makes such observations and discoveries available to viewers..but the fashion that this is made available leaves much to be desired. So blast off to the internet and find more about it...it's very cool stuff..
Another issue comes from standard media outlets having 'science' reporters, rather than reporters who have been well versed in any particular field. They're happy to say 'oh, you're a scientist, you can report on the new constraints on the Higgs at CERN' to someone with a biology degree, or the equally misplaced physicist talking about palentology.
Scientists tend to like to comment only on fields they've got some experiance in, but science writers for major media outlets are typically forced to write for areas outside of their expertise.
I'm cool with how the article was written. It is a more chill form of journalism, a little refreshing from other articles I've read. Just don't be writing snobs everyone. It got the point across, right?
I am sure the guy who wrote this article has 3 PhD's.
This "science" article appears to have been written for five-year-olds. What a waste of my time.
You commenting on this article is a waste of your time then.
How many minutes do you have left? Don't waste them all!
The article has an embedded hyperlink to the SDO website where you can download media more appropriate for your education level.
If there are too many pictures there for you, go to JPL and download some research papers professor.
Mr. Marciano should go back to reporting fishing tournaments, or writing for My Weekly Reader. I think Boy's Life is too sophisticated for this tripe.
Yes, and if you ask the mopes at NASA (you know the folks at the Space Agency that can't fly) that big ball of FIRE in the sky we cal the Sun has nothing to do with Global Warming.
Congratulations, you win the award for the dumbest comment of the day!!!
And what would they know, they're only the people who track the sun's total flux and moniter the earth's temperature with a network of satillites, it's not like they would be able to, say, build a model of the sun's activity to compare it to global temperature flucuations on earth and say 'the sun cannot account for the current warming trend on earth' from a position of knowledge, right? You'd need some robust national aronautics and space administration to preform some detailed analysis to ever get information like that... and NASA stands for what again?
climate. nasa. gov/
There you go
Yes, it's kind of amazing just how much things like anthropogenic climate change are a huge blind spot for you Objectivists. So what do you do when your personal beliefs are challenged by something like, say, reality? Why you deny reality of course! Afterall, the lion isn't there when the ostrich sticks his head in the ground.
The sun is not a ball of fire. You know, fire = fuel, oxygen, and ignition temperature. Fire is a chemical process. The sun's energy output is caused by fusion. Your comment is caused by con-fusion. I'm thinking the dumbest comment of the week.
Typical CNN idiocy. "Fire and brimstone?????" From where does CNN get this drivel?
woooooooooooooo, call out the Atheist police. Someone said something in JEST that makes you feel like some boogey man's trying to convert you. wooooooooggley boogley
Good one. ha ha ha
They're prepping us for the end of the Mayan calendar this year!
I keep reading comments hoping to find someone that has something sensible to say, only to find out that it's the same type of moronic comments that are on the internet concerning anything.
Sounds like you added nothing of value either.
Read the article again while considering the proverb "Birds of a feather flock together". They/We are just following the path laid out for them/us by the article.
The sun is a miasma of incandescent plasma.
But even when it's out of sight, the sun shines night and day!
No way! Mom said it went out at nyte
The only thing I care about the Sun is that it makes women put on skimpy bikinis and frolic on the beaches – that's enough for me.
mmmmmmmm, tan lines. C'mon, Summer!!!
His “boy Aristotle”? What? Why does CNN hire a person who sounds like a meteorologist on Prison Work Release when they can afford to hire a real astronomer?
Should they really make such an effort to impress the people that comment on this thread? I mean, really... (yes, I know I'm on here, too).
Global warming is making the sun hot. I can see Russia from the sun.
Looks like Whitney Houston settling in.
Hey ET why don't you phone home or better yet hop aboard your spaceship and land on lthe SUN!!!!
The sun doesn't power all living things on earth ... I have no science background and even I know this. Deep sea volcanoes miles below the surface provide nutrients and heat for some tiny organisms, with absolutely no benefits being provided by the sun. Thank you to the Planet Earth tv series for teaching me that
Let's put it this way – if the Sun died out, it would get very cold, very quickly. Every human and animal on Earth would both die a cold (and dark) death.
The Sun is a GOOD thing.
Actaully the sun will continue to expand, eventually enveloping and burning up the earth, in a few billion years.
Well, no, not exactly. Creatures living around hydrothermal vents and all the exobactera which live directly off geothermal heat miles underground would be fine. It's only after all the radioactivity in the center of the Earth stops that they finally go.
Actually, you're partially correct. THIS sun may not exactly power the hot center of our Earth directly, but look at it this way: 1). that ball of hot molten material in the Earth's interior would never have coalesced into a nice planet if it weren't for the sun, and 2). every bit of the Earth is the very stuff of older stars that have died and left us with what we have. So, stars in general have provided every bit of energy and life that this planet, and any other, has ever generated.
Wow, for a deranged cowbrain, you're pretty freakin' smart!
And for a lizard, you're pretty funny! Most lizards I've met are a bit cold.
Good times! Brought to you by the Sun from the SON!
me likey the sun
These posts chronicle an epic battle between geeks and dopes. Fascinating! The sun is scary and beautiful and magical. Let's just enjoy it while it lasts.
Look!!...a unicorn!! Smiling is fun!!
umeh koyekachunwu.duke Posted on am umeh koyekachunwu,a 27years old boy from nigeria,a graduate of computer and information science lead city university ibadan.please sir,i tried to look for the link of where to fill the scholarship application form
It doesn't matter what size the sun is What matters is that God created it
. Does anyone wonder that this may be a sign of His coming?
Are you saying God left? I thought he was all around us...
My children and some of my nieecs and nephews attend the same small school where I teach. The other day my four-year-old asked me why her cousins had not yet arrived at school. I explained that they had a dentist appointment to go to and would be at school later. I went on to tell her that she and her sisters would soon be having dentist appointments as well. Armed with that information, she went running off to find her sisters. I over heard her saying, "The Petroviches (cousins) aren't here because they have a disappointment this morning and we're going to have a disappointment soon too!
No. No I don't.
If you think this is a sign of God's coming – then you are a complete IDIOT!!!! These have been sunspots since the time the sun was formed...........how sad that the religious "dumb – dumbs" can not understand simple science.......sad – sad – sad...
Far from simple....we are all dumb dumbs on the scale of what we realize we don't know, from what we do.
I think it is the sign that God's creator is coming because God should already been here.
Until you can prove there is a god. (which you can't) what business do you have making these absurd comments. Reality just can"t overcome the brainwashing you have gone through can it? Never mind. You won't understand anyway!
Have you considered medication for your delusions about your god(s). Have you seen this god lately? Is he talking to you? What's his name? Is he a he or a she? Why doesn't he/she/it show up and tell people down here on this little speck of dust that perhaps they should stop killing each other in his/her/its name.
Well said Charlie.
Maybe that's God's "plan?"
If by "god", you mean a mixture between primordial hydrogen and helium and leftover elements from previous supernovae, and by "created", you mean coalesced under gravitational collapse, then yes, you could say "god" "created" the Sun.
Anchor: "For more in depth coverage, we turn to the CNN Science Correspondent, Paris Hilton. Paris?"
Paris: "That's hot."
Anchor: "Thank you, Paris. As always, great coverage."
Paris as a correspondent... hilarious!!! well done.
Off camera she was overheard to say "The sun's great, and all, but NOTHING GOES DOWN like me!! Don't believe me? Check the video."
Funny stuff Melvinslizard. Pure gold.
You could fit 1 million Earths inside of our Sun, which from our humble perspective is huge. The largest know star, VY Cannis Majoris, is estimated to be able to fit 4.6 BILLION of our Suns inside of it. If it replaced our Sun at the center of our solar system it's outer surface would extend out beyond the orbit of Saturn.
What is the US coast guard ship doing so far from US coast? Chasing drug dealers all the way to the Persian Gulf?
Thinking you're a bit lost.
Astronomers at the famous Sarah Palin Galactic Observatory / Bait Shop have teamed up physicists at the equally famous Sarah Palin University to study this phenomenon. It is their intention to land one of their new Teabagger Space Trailers on the surface of the sun. They plan to do it at night when the sun is dark and presumably not so hot.
lmao, now that's how you comment folks, well done!
Thanks for your support !!
F'in hilarious... Great to see some humor out there in between all the know-it-all's and religitards!
Does not your commenting on "religitards" make you a religitard? I don't think you can conscientiously claim to be a antireligitard given the time honored saying "takes one to know one".
Having your head up your rectum makes baby Jesus cry.
Thats because he loves me.
Awesome...best comment of the day!
Oh cmon people, the article is full of personality and excitement. Since when did that become a crime? So much negativity.I swear, I think maybe if you guys got laid a few times a year you'd stop being such whiney crybabies. And no, I'm not offering lol.
In other news, the sun is quite bright and gets all hot and stuff. It is also in space. Space is like a bazzillion times bigger than the Earth. The Earth is Bunches and bunches bigger than a rabbit. Think of the implications, space is a Bazzillion multiplied by bunches and bunches bigger than a rabbit.
Can I have a job writhing for CNN?
That's some amazing copy! OK. I've never done this before, hiring someone, just from seeing one comment on an article, but your hired! You start on Tuesday.
LOL!! I love it! Nerd anger ! ;-)
The sun is so huge !! Yet, the heaviest element our sun can produce by nuclear fusion is iron. For anything heavier than that you need a supernova. Wonder what a tornado like this would be on a supernova.
It would be a dead tornado.
The sun isn't massive enough to create iron... only carbon. Iron is the largest atom you can create naturally via nuclear fusion, and happens in only the most massive stars.
A supernova isn't a "what" as much as a "when". It is the event of a star exploding.
The sun. It's hot. You wouldn't want to go there. It's full of fire and brimstone. It's 10,000 degrees at it's surface. It's big too! You wouldn't survive because of the radiation...and because it's hot.
WE KNOW THIS ALREADY! We learned it in early elementary school.
wait, wait...it's HOT?? Dang!
My gawd, it's full of stars....and totally hawt.
That article sounds like it was written by a middle school kid. Papers and essays that I wrote in high school were better than this. CNN, can I have a job as a news reporter?
The article is almost a series of tweets. The writer didn't even bother to organize his sentences into paragraphs... What a waste.
Of course, the subject matter is very interesting and I'm glad the major news outlets are reporting on it but next time maybe not with this guy.
I think all the writers are distracted because later they are going to the party for the cnn producer who won the lottery twice – you know, the one who wrote the article telling people not to buy lottery tickets, its working incredibly hard that makes people winners! Its a good thing God ignored the suffering of millions less fortunate to take the time to bless her with a lottery win. Yup, turns out God loves gambling. Its a good thing the cnn producer won a million dollars, before that she could not afford car repairs. I guess cnn producers are paid minimum wage or something.
I think I'll go over to Scientific American or Discover to get my science news from now on.
There isn't fire on the Sun, it's not possible for it to exist. There's Plasma.
Dear CNN, your newz riports are making me more stoopider. Pleez hav somewon more smrat rite them befor I get more stoopid. Tahnk you.
Science is for little kids...oh, and every other thinking person. Who wrote this crap?
Someone more intelligent with broader thinking than you I suppose? *shrugs*
science makes baby jesus cry
@ Drew: Funniest. Post. Ever.
Why is everyone obsessed with the inaccuracy of the Sun's size wrt our earth. If these are truly our Sun's images and not something photoshopped, I must say this is rather cool and that we have surely come a long way. There is tons remaining to be learned and understood when it comes to the cosmos but we are inching there a little at a time.
The video is pretty amazing. I think the earth/sun confusion is because it's usually not described like that. Personally, I like that visualization. It's humbling how small we are compared to the sun.
They just suck at writing more and more each week.
Yeah I think the diameter is around 110 times larger than earth.
1 million times is actually correct, as the diameter alone is 100 times the size of earth. But seriously, was this written by a high school kid? Since when are phrases like "I'm diggin' " "my boy Aristotle" or " 'cause" used in news reports?
Yeah, a bit off I suppose you could say. Quoting from universetoday.com: "And here’s the big difference. The total volume of the Sun is 1.4 x 1027 cubic meters. You could fit 1.3 million Earths inside the Sun with room to spare". So, 1.3 million times bigger than earth. Is that closer to "your math"?
Geek fail. Give us the science, let us be excited about it. When you're excited for us, it's like someone's dad telling you how "cool and with it" he is. Nobody wants to party with that guy. Aristotle is not your boy.
You might want to check yours. It would take 1.3 million Earths to fill up the Sun. For a CNN reporter he's not too far off.
Infact his statement "over 1 million times the size of the Earth" is 100% accurate.
It is one hundred times bigger than earth in three dimensions, that means 100x100x100 considering the three dimensions of volume it equates to 1 millions times. In other words you will need to place 1 million earths into sun to fill it :)
the sun doesn't exist. its just a left wing media ploy to discredit religion
I knew it! LOL
"1 million times the size of the earth??? You may want to check your math kiddo...
The "1 million times" estimate isn't all that far off on volume, actually.
Depends what's meant by size. By volume, the sun is more than 1 million times the size. Not by diameter or mass however.
It's actually low. The diameter of the sun is about 1.4 million km and the diameter of earth is about 12,750 km. Since volume involves taking the radius to the third power, if you run the numbers, you'll see the sun is actually about 1.3 million times the size of earth.
I need a math teacher are you available?
And not good at math either
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