An image of one of a dozen such tornadoes found by SOHO. The lighter right-hand side is material that is moving towards SOHO. The darker left-hand side is material that is moving away from SOHO (the doppler effect).
Click on image for full size
Courtesy of NASA
Tornadoes on the Sun!
News story originally written on May 1, 1998
There just seem to be so many exciting things happening in space these days! One new discovery is that there are storms on the Sun very similar to our own tornadoes
! This discovery was made by ESA/NASA spacecraft SOHO
SOHO has spotted a dozen of these storms. These storms are as wide as the planet Earth and have gusts ten times faster than anything measured on Earth! Doesn't seem as if we're in Kansas anymore!
Also, happening on the Sun...There seems to have been a coronal mass ejection two days ago. Activity like this on the Sun can often disrupt radio communications. It can cause pilots to lose contact with their control towers and even disorient migratory anmals that depend on the Earth's magnetic field for guidance.
You might also be interested in:
It was another exciting and frustrating year for the space science program. It seemed that every step forward led to one backwards. Either way, NASA led the way to a great century of discovery. Unfortunately,...more
The Space Shuttle Discovery lifted off from Kennedy Space Center on October 29th at 2:19 p.m. EST. The weather was great as Discovery took 8 1/2 minutes to reach orbit. This was the United States' 123rd...more
A moon was discovered orbiting the asteroid, Eugenia. This is only the second time in history that a satellite has been seen circling an asteroid. A special mirror allowed scientists to find the moon...more
Will Russia ever put the service module for the International Space Station in space? NASA officials want an answer from the Russian government. The necessary service module is currently waiting to be...more
A coronal mass ejection (CME) happened on the Sun early last month. The material that was thrown out from this explosion passed the ACE spacecraft. The SWICS instrument on ACE has produced a new and very...more
J.S. Maini of the Canadian Forest Service called forests the "heart and lungs of the world." This is because forests filter air and water pollution, absorb carbon dioxide, release oxygen, and maintain...more
In late April through mid-May 2002, all five naked-eye planets are visible at the same time in the night sky! This is includes Mercury which is generally very hard to see. You won't want to miss this!...more