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Three images looking down onto the centre of the solar disc. They show nicely the unique 'journey' through the Sun's atmosphere which CDS allows us to take. Huge magnetic loops extending tens of thousands of km into space trapping hot gases inside them. We have seen such loop systems develop into extremely complex so-called 'active regions' where loops clash and twist like elastic bands before some kind of break down results in the ejection of clouds or streams of particles into space. The images show CDS' unique ability to map such regions. Four images are taken of the same region at the same time - some 200,000 km x 200,000 km. The radiation comes from trace gases in the Sun's atmosphere. The coolest gases (20,000 degrees) are shown in the top left image, and the hottest (2 million degrees) in the bottom right. The edge of the Sun is seen on the left of each image and different gases show different loops giving a spectacular display above the surface of the Sun.

From the CDS Operations Management Team in the Space Science & Technology Department at CCLRC Rutherford Appleton Laboratory
Site maintained by John Rainnie.
Last revised on Tuesday (17/Jul/2001) at 09:55.