Space A huge explosion in the sun: a probe captures a historic picture of a gas eruption millions of kilometers away

According to the European Space Agency, the eruption was harmless to Earth, but a good example of why it is good to monitor the Sun’s activities.

In the sun last Tuesday, 15 February, there was an exceptionally large gas eruption, or protuberance, the European Space Agency Esa said in a statement.

A joint Solar Orbiter from Esa and the U.S. Space Agency, NASA, captured an eruption that reached millions of miles from the Sun.

According to Esa, this is the largest gas eruption ever obtained for a single image along with the entire Sun. The picture was taken because the Solar Orbiter happened to be at just the right distance from the Sun.

The Solar Orbiter was launched into space two years ago. It seeks to elucidate the Sun’s still largely unknown behavior.

Below you can watch a video from the space agency Esa about the eruption. The video combines the recordings of the Solar Orbiter and the SOHO space observatory:

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Another video shows the same eruption a little further away:

Explosion was not directed at a probe exploring the Earth or the Sun, Esa says in a press release. Apparently, the particles and radiation released from the eruption are on their way away from Earth.

According to the Finnish Meteorological Institute protuberances may persist for months and gradually fade away. However, they can also explode during a burst or corona mass discharge. If the eruption occurs on the Earth’s side, it could harm satellites, for example.

According to Esa, the eruption was a good reminder of why it is good to monitor the Sun’s activities.

“While the incident did not send an explosion of deadly particles toward Earth, it is an important reminder of the unpredictability of the Sun and the importance of understanding and monitoring its behavior,” the organization writes in a statement.

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