Strange flashes of light from the Sun: Scientists have deciphered the signals

There is something new today in the Sun: just like Giovanni Pascoli at the end of the 19th century, this same thought must have occurred to the scientists of the NASA who have taken advantage of their social channels to share an image that is nothing short of stunning. Simply put, gods were noticed X-ray that protrude directly from the surface of the Sun.


Already a few weeks ago there was talk of the ambitious attempt of the Italian astrophysicists of “enter” our star, this time a photo was taken using the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array. This tool, also known as NuSTARallows you to observe the Sun in depth and in the last image made public via Instagram you can see high-energy emissions.

In practice, these same emissions are of varying magnitude and substantially characterized by two colors, blue and green. The red of the NASA photo, then, highlights the low temperature material found in theatmosphere of the Sun. What is the significance of these X-rays? Green shades are nothing but energies between 2 and 3 kiloelectron volts. L’electron volts it is nothing more than the measure of energy, exploited above all in the atomic and subatomic fields: in practice it is the energy that is gained or lost by the electric charge of a single electron. The suffix -kilo equals one thousand electron volts. The blue of the rays, on the other hand, indicates between 3 and 5 kiloelectron volts.

The objectives of the project

The Sun’s own X-rays come from gas heated to over 3 million degrees, therefore a temperature that literally makes an impression, despite a “vacation” on our star is still considered possible. The discovery of NASA is part of those of the SDO, an acronym that identifies the Solar Dynamics Observatorya project that has the task of observing the Sun in detail since 2010. Other objectives of this mission are to monitor the influence of the star on the Earth and on the space near our planet, without forgetting the solar atmosphere and the magnetic field.

The most obvious colors

To obtain the X-ray image, the scientists simply superimposed the shot of the Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array and that of the SDO. The Sun appears as a sort of semicircle with a lot of black space in the background. THE green, red and blue jets they are impossible to miss, as they stand out clearly from the red and black of the solar surface. Returning to the NuSTAR, this telescope was launched for the first time in 2012therefore it has just celebrated ten years of activity.

It is not the first time that NASA’s sophisticated device has achieved great results. Thanks to his observations, it was possible to propose an alternative analysis regarding a high-energy radio source in the Andromeda galaxy. Scientists started from what they analyzed in 1970 and 2013, arriving at a surprising conclusion in the scientific field, given that the radio source itself is none other than a pulsar which is part of a binary system. It is true that some astronomers they are trying to “cloud” the sunbut for the moment the prevailing studies on our star are precisely those just described.

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Strange flashes of light from the Sun: Scientists have deciphered the signals


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