What Are Prominences On The Sun

What Are Prominences On The Sun?

A solar prominence (also known as a filament when viewed against the solar disk) is a large bright feature extending outward from the Sun’s surface. Prominences are anchored to the Sun’s surface in the photosphere and extend outwards into the Sun’s hot outer atmosphere called the corona.Mar 6 2015

What are prominences on the sun caused by?

Prominences sometimes extend hundreds of thousands of kilometres above the Sun’s chromosphere. Their causes are uncertain but probably involve magnetic forces. … Prominences are clouds of incandescent ionized gas ejected from the Sun’s surface.

What types of prominences are there on the sun’s surface?

There are two basic types of prominences: (1) quiescent or long-lived and (2) transient. The former are associated with large-scale magnetic fields marking the boundaries of unipolar magnetic regions or sunspot groups. Because the large unipolar plates are long-lived the quiescent prominences are as well.

What are flares and prominences from the sun?

A prominence is a bright relatively dense and relatively cool arched cloud of ionized gas in the chromosphere and corona of the Sun. … A solar flare is a sudden brief (typically lasting only a few minutes) and explosive release of solar magnetic energy that heats and accelerates the gas in the Sun’s atmosphere.

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What are prominences and sunspots both?

Sunspots occur in pairs because each is one side of a loop of the Sun’s magnetic field that reaches the Sun’s surface. … Solar prominences are the plasma loops that connect two sunspots.

What happens when prominences connect?

photosphere. These sun features are explosions of hot gas that occur when prominences connect. They shoot from the Sun’s surface releasing tremendous amounts of energy into space.

What causes solar flares and prominences to occur?

Solar flares are a sudden explosion of energy caused by tangling crossing or reorganizing of magnetic field lines near sunspots. The surface of the Sun is a very busy place. It has electrically charged gases that generate areas of powerful magnetic forces. These areas are called magnetic fields.

How big are prominences on the sun?

According to Chaisson & McMillan the size of a typical solar prominence is on the order of 100 000 km or around 10 times the diameter of Earth. Larger ones can reach a half-million kilometers. Prominences can show surges in time scales of hours but the quiescent ones can persist for days or weeks.

What is the difference between a prominence and a filament?

When viewed spewing from the edge of the Sun against the darkness of space astronomers call the feature a prominence. But when seen against the background of the Sun from a different perspective the feature appears darker than its surroundings and is called a filament.

What is the corona of the sun?

corona outermost region of the Sun’s atmosphere consisting of plasma (hot ionized gas). It has a temperature of approximately two million kelvins and an extremely low density. The corona continually varies in size and shape as it is affected by the Sun’s magnetic field.

What causes a prominence?

Prominences are shaped by the Sun’s complex magnetic field often forming loops with each end “anchored” to the Sun’s surface (photosphere). Prominences are enormous extending for many thousands of kilometers (miles). Prominences can last for several days – or up to several months!

What is the phase of matter in the sun?

The Sun is our nearest star. It is as all stars are a hot ball of gas made up mostly of Hydrogen. The Sun is so hot that most of the gas is actually plasma the fourth state of matter. The first state is a solid and it is the coldest state of matter.

What would a solar flare do to Earth?

Solar flares strongly influence the local space weather in the vicinity of the Earth. They can produce streams of highly energetic particles in the solar wind known as solar particle events. These particles can impact the Earth’s magnetosphere and present radiation hazards to spacecraft and astronauts.

What are the black spots on the Sun?

Sunspots are darker cooler areas on the surface of the sun in a region called the photosphere. The photosphere has a temperature of 5 800 degrees Kelvin. Sunspots have temperatures of about 3 800 degrees K. They look dark only in comparison with the brighter and hotter regions of the photosphere around them.

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How do prominences affect Earth?

Prominences are associated with the release of high energy particles known as a solar flare. … The solar flare aspect of a prominence has the most common effect on the earth. Normally the magnetic field surrounding earth deflects harmful solar radiation.

Do prominences look dark in regular photographs?

The pictures show ultraviolet light the hotter the temperature the brighter the light. Although the gas in a prominence is unimaginably hot by human standards it is actually cool compared to the Sun’s surface. Compared to the mottled yellow of the surface the filament looks dark.

What’s the definition of prominences?

: the state of being important well-known or noticeable : the state of being prominent.

When prominences join they cause sunspots solar flares?

Solar prominences are the plasma loops that connect two sunspots. Solar flares and coronal mass ejections are eruptions of highly energetic particles that can erupt from the Sun’s surface and cause problems with power grids and communications on Earth.

What is the main difference between a solar flare and a prominence?

A prominence is anchored to the Sun’s surface unlike a flare and is often characterized by a loop shape. A prominence is bound by the Sun’s magnetic field and can last for months.

What are solar prominences for kids?

A solar prominence (also known as a filament) is an arc of gas that erupts from the surface of the Sun. Prominences can loop hundreds of thousands of miles into space. Prominences are held above the Sun’s surface by strong magnetic fields and can last for many months.

How do geomagnetic storms affect humans?

Does the Earth’s magnetic field affect human health? The Earth’s magnetic field does not directly affect human health. … High-altitude pilots and astronauts can experience higher levels of radiation during magnetic storms but the hazard is due to the radiation not the magnetic field itself.

What are the solarwinds?

The solar wind is a stream of charged particles released from the upper atmosphere of the Sun called the corona. This plasma mostly consists of electrons protons and alpha particles with kinetic energy between 0.5 and 10 keV.

How often do solar prominences occur?

They form over timescales of about a day and may persist in the corona for several weeks or months looping hundreds of thousands of kilometers into space.

Why is the solar prominence important?

These prominences can last for days sometimes even months and are often associated with a very powerful surge of gas that flows outward in a giant solar “belch” — a coronal mass ejection that can light up Earth’s skies with an aurora and even interfere with our technology. For solar observers prominences are a joy.

What will the sun be when it runs out of heat?

Once all the helium disappears the forces of gravity will take over and the sun will shrink into a white dwarf. All the outer material will dissipate leaving behind a planetary nebula. “When a star dies it ejects a mass of gas and dust — known as its envelope — into space.

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What is a Plage on the Sun?

A plage is a bright region in the chromosphere of the Sun typically found in and around active regions. The term itself is poetically taken from the French word for “beach”.

Why do the sunspots appear dark?

Sunspots are “dark” because they are cooler than their surroundings. … Sunspots have a lighter outer section called the penumbra and a darker central region named the umbra. Sunspots are caused by disturbances in the Sun’s magnetic field welling up to the photosphere the Sun’s visible “surface”.

What part of the Sun is the hottest?

Core
Core. The hottest part of the Sun is the core at 28 080 000°F on average.Mar 27 2009

What is totality solar eclipse?

: an eclipse of the sun in which the moon completely hides the solar surface or photosphere and thereby cuts off all direct rays of sunlight from the observer.

Which two elements make up the Sun?

Despite the controversy everyone agrees on the basics: The sun consists mainly of hydrogen and helium the two lightest elements. It generates energy at its center through nuclear reactions that convert hydrogen into helium.

What does the chromosphere of the Sun do?

The layer above the photosphere is the chromosphere. The chromosphere emits a reddish glow as super-heated hydrogen burns off. But the red rim can only be seen during a total solar eclipse. … The chromosphere may play a role in conducting heat from the interior of the sun to its outermost layer the corona.

Can we see prominences?

But as you point out anyone can see prominences any day with the aid of a telescope fitted with a hydrogen-alpha (Hα) filter. … The hydrogen emission is responsible for the distinctive color of prominences and the chromosphere the tenuous hot layer of gas overlying the photosphere.

What is the solar flare of the sun?

Solar flares are massive eruptions of radiation from the sun that send charged particles streaming outward from the star.

How fast do particles in the solar wind get hurled out of the sun?

The steady stream of particles blowing away from the sun is known as the solar wind. Blustering at 800 000 to 5 million miles per hour the solar wind carries a million tons of matter into space every second (that’s the mass of Utah’s Great Salt Lake) and reaches well beyond the solar system’s planets.

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