This Seemingly Small Explosion on the Sun Is 100,000 Miles Tall

I sometimes find that amid Hubble's glorious pictures of our galaxy, neighboring galaxies, and far off corners of the universe, our humble solar system can begin to feel very local, and with that, even a bit small.

But then you come across something that'll warp your perspective right back in the other direction, reminding you just how huge the other objects in our solar system are, at least when compared with Earth. In that vein, here's a new video from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which captured this 100,000 miles-tall solar flare on Sunday. For comparison, the *circumference* of the Earth at the equator is a little bit less than 25,000 miles. At 238,900 miles, the distance from here to the moon is a little more than twice the height of the explosion.

Presented by

Rebecca J. Rosen is a senior editor at The Atlantic, where she oversees the Business Channel. She was previously an associate editor at The Wilson Quarterly.

Join the Discussion

After you comment, click Post. If you’re not already logged in you will be asked to log in or register with Disqus.

Please note that The Atlantic's account system is separate from our commenting system. To log in or register with The Atlantic, use the Sign In button at the top of every page.

blog comments powered by Disqus

Video

A Stop-Motion Tour of New York City

A filmmaker animated hundreds of still photographs to create this Big Apple flip book

Video

The Absurd Psychology of Restaurant Menus

Would people eat healthier if celery was called "cool celery?"

Video

This Japanese Inn Has Been Open For 1,300 Years

It's one of the oldest family businesses in the world.

Video

What Happens Inside a Dying Mind?

Science cannot fully explain near-death experiences.

More in Technology

Just In