The Sun is warm­est far away from its sur­face

Science Illustrated - - MEGAPIXEL/THE SUN -

The Sun’s sur­face, the pho­to­sphere, is a toasty 6,000°C, but its outer at­mos­phere, the corona, can get 10+ mil­lion °C, par­tic­u­larly when so­lar erup­tions oc­cur. The So­lar Dy­nam­ics Ob­ser­va­tory (SDO) space tele­scope stud­ies the Sun in sev­eral wave­lengths, which cap­ture the ra­di­a­tion from spe­cific lay­ers of its at­mos­phere. These are SDO record­ings from the Sun’s sur­face to the up­per layer of its at­mos­phere. Sci­en­tists do not yet fully un­der­stand why the tem­per­a­ture rises in the Sun’s at­mos­phere, but mag­netic forces prob­a­bly play a role.

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