Astronomy Picture of the Day

Discover the cosmos! Each day a different image or photograph of our fascinating universe is featured, along with a brief explanation written by a professional astronomer.

June 29, 1998

Solar Magnetic Bananas
Credit: A. Gary et al. (NASA/MSFC), NASA

Explanation: Is that our Sun? The unusual banana-shaped loops shown above are actually part of a computer-generated snap-shot of our Sun's magnetic field. This animated frame was constructed using data from the ground-based U.S. Solar Vector Magnetograph and the space-based Japanese X-Ray Telescope Yohkoh. Surfaces of constant magnetic field strength loop through the Sun's corona, break through the Sun's surface, and connect regions of magnetic activity such as sunspots. Recently, contact has been interrupted with the Sun-watching SOHO satellite. Although SOHO had completed it's two year mission, attempts are still being made to re-establish communication.

這是我們的太陽嗎? 上圖裡的不尋常香蕉狀迴圈,實際上是用電腦產生的太陽磁場快照的一部分。 這個動畫定格,是使用地面的美國太陽向量磁相儀,及日本陽光號衛星的X射線望遠鏡之資料製作出來的。 定值磁場強度的迴圈會穿過日冕,突破太陽的表面,然後連接到太陽黑子等磁活躍區。 最近地面站與觀日SOHO衛星的聯繫已中斷。 儘管SOHO已經完成了它的兩年任務期,但與它重新建立通信的努力仍在持續中。

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