Double-barreled Solar Event
This was a large enough event that my friends and family in Alaska should be seeing some semi-spectacular Northern Lights this weekend.
An active region on the Sun unleashed two blasts in quick succession (Jan. 19, 2012), which have sent particle clouds headed towards Earth. The images combine the wider field of view from SOHO’s C2 coronagraph with the Sun itself as seen in extreme UV light by Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO). The initial burst above the Sun is from the sar side of the Sun and not headed our way. The next two bursts, one quickly following the other, are from the bright active region seen near the 10 o’clock position. A series of coronal loops rise up above the active region after these events. The impact on the geomagnetic storm Earth may cause some bright auroras. The video covers about 24 hours of activity.
More great SDO footage uploaded here.