NASA Just Released a Mesmerizing Time-Lapse Showing 5 Years in the Life of the Sun
This might be the only time NASA is encouraging you to look directly at the sun.
The space agency released video Wednesday that shows the sun's surface ridden with constant explosions. The footage was released in celebration of the five-year anniversary of the Solar Dynamics Observatory in Washington D.C., where the camera is located.
"Watch the movie to see giant clouds of solar material hurled out into space, the dance of giant loops hovering in the corona, and huge sunspots growing and shrinking on the sun's surface," NASA explains per the YouTube's description box.
The five-minute video consists of a series of pictures taken every eight hours from June 2010 to this last Sunday. NASA said the imagery provided by Solar Dynamics Observatory is important to scientists so they can better understand how the sun works.
"By watching the sun in different wavelengths — and therefore different temperatures — scientists can watch how material courses through the corona, which holds clues to what causes eruptions on the sun, what heats the sun's atmosphere up to 1,000 times hotter than its surface, and why the sun's magnetic fields are constantly on the move," NASA said, according to the New York Daily News.
Hopefully in the future, the sun's solar energy can be converted into liquid energy to provide more alternative fuels. But these images are going to have to keep us going in the meantime.