Stunning image of Sun captured by Inouye Solar Telescope, world's most powerful

The Inouye Solar Telescope has captured a mesmerizing image of the Sun’s atmosphere to mark the first anniversary of the solar telescope’s operation.

| Updated on: Sep 12 2022, 19:51 IST
Think you know our Sun? Check out THESE 5 stunning facts
1/5 The Sun is the largest object in our solar system and is a 4.5 billion-year-old star – a hot glowing ball of hydrogen and helium at the center of the solar system. It is about 93 million miles (150 million kilometers) from Earth, and without its energy, life as we know it could not exist here on our home planet. (Pixabay)
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2/5 The Sun’s volume would need 1.3 million Earths to fill it. Its gravity holds the solar system together, keeping everything from the biggest planets to the smallest bits of debris in orbit around it. The hottest part of the Sun is its core, where temperatures top 27 million degrees Fahrenheit (15 million degrees Celsius). The Sun’s activity, from its powerful eruptions to the steady stream of charged particles it sends out, influences the nature of space throughout the solar system. (NASA)
3/5 According to NASA, measuring a “day” on the Sun is complicated because of the way it rotates. It doesn't spin as a single, solid ball. This is because the Sun’s surface isn't solid like Earth's. Instead, the Sun is made of super-hot, electrically charged gas called plasma. This plasma rotates at different speeds on different parts of the Sun. At its equator, the Sun completes one rotation in 25 Earth days. At its poles, the Sun rotates once on its axis every 36 Earth days. (NASA)
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4/5 Above the Sun’s surface are its thin chromosphere and the huge corona (crown). This is where we see features such as solar prominences, flares, and coronal mass ejections. The latter two are giant explosions of energy and particles that can reach Earth. (Pixabay)
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5/5 The Sun doesn’t have moons, but eight planets orbit it, at least five dwarf planets, tens of thousands of asteroids, and perhaps three trillion comets and icy bodies. Also, several spacecraft are currently investigating the Sun including Parker Solar Probe, STEREO, Solar Orbiter, SOHO, Solar Dynamics Observatory, Hinode, IRIS, and Wind. (Pixabay)
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Check out this stunning image of the area above the surface of the Sun captured by the world’s most powerful solar telescope. (U.S. National Science Foundation/Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope)

Earth has faced numerous solar flares these past few months and more are expected as the Sun moves ahead in its 11-year solar cycle, resulting in increased solar activity and solar output. As many as 32 Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) have been observed emitting from the Sun in the past couple of weeks. Taking images of the Sun is a difficult task as it requires a strong telescope which can capture the giant star. The Inouye Solar Telescope has achieved this amazing feat.

The U.S. National Science Foundation's Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope has captured a stunning image of the Sun's chromosphere, the area of the Sun's atmosphere above the surface. Hair-like plasma, known as granules, across a region of nearly 82,500 kilometers can be seen in the image, according to the press release issued by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The stunning image of the Sun was taken at 486.13 nanometers using the hydrogen-beta line from the Balmer series, according to the NSO.

What is the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope?

According to the NSF, the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope is the world's most powerful solar telescope commissioned after 25 years of meticulous research. It is mounted at the top of the Maui volcano Haleakala in Hawaii. The telescope has marked one year of being in service with the release of this stunning image of the Sun.

Sethuraman Panchanathan, NSF director said in the press release, “NSF's Inouye Solar Telescope is the world's most powerful solar telescope that will forever change the way we explore and understand our Sun. Its insights will transform how our nation, and the planet, predict and prepare for events like solar storms.”

The Inouye Solar Telescope has also gathered important data for various space agencies around the world and has worked with NASA's Parker Solar Probe and ESA and NASA's Solar Orbiter to conduct solar observations.

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First Published Date: 12 Sep, 19:51 IST