It has been just revealed the fact that there has been a large hole in the sun’s atmosphere that sent high-speed solar winds to our planet. Check out the latest reports about this below.
Huge hole in the sun’s atmosphere
NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) captured a video of a sunspot between December 2-4, 2023. Although the sunspot appears large and unsettling in appearance, it is not a major cause for concern.
Sunspots typically look like this in extreme ultraviolet (EUV) and soft X-ray images because they are cooler in temperature and less dense than the surrounding regions.
“Sunspots are areas where the magnetic field is about 2,500 times stronger than Earth’s, much higher than anywhere else on the Sun,” the National Weather Service explains.
“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.”
According to the Space Weather Prediction Center of the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration, the sunspot is not expected to cause significant problems for Earth.
They predict a minor-moderate geomagnetic storm to arrive from midday (UTC) on December 4.
The activity of the sun follows an 11-year cycle known as the Schwabe cycle. From 1826 to 1843, German amateur astronomer Heinrich Schwabe observed the Sun and discovered that it rotates on its axis once every 27 days.
He also noticed that the Sun goes through quiet periods where no sunspots can be seen, and maximum phases where 20 or more groups of sunspots can be seen.
It is crucial to understand that solar activity is currently increasing. NASA’s initial prediction for the next solar maximum, which is when the Sun’s activity reaches its peak during this cycle, was set for 2025.
However, NASA has now revised this prediction and is confident that the solar maximum will occur between January and October of 2024.
“We expect that our new experimental forecast will be much more accurate than the 2019 panel prediction and, unlike previous solar cycle predictions, it will be continuously updated on a monthly basis as new sunspot observations become available,” Mark Miesch, the solar cycle lead at NOAA’s Space Weather Prediction Center, said in a statement at the time.
“It’s a pretty significant change.”
Another team predicts mid-2024 as the midpoint of the solar cycle.
They studied magnetic donuts at 55 degrees latitude on both hemispheres of the Sun. These formations migrate towards the equator, where they cancel each other out, called a Hale cycle terminator.
This event occurs up to two years after the minimum and helps make more accurate predictions about solar cycles.
“If you measure how long a cycle is, not the minimum to minimum, but from terminator to terminator, you see that there is a strong linear relationship between how long one cycle is and how strong the next one is going to be,” NASA research scientist Robert Leamon told Space.com.