Scientists can track solar storms from the sun to Earth using the latest images from NASA's twin STEREO spacecraft. This video animation presents how new panoramic views of almost half of the sky are created by combining images from the SECCHI suite of telescopes on both spacecraft.
They allow scientists to track a type of solar disturbance called a Coronal Mass Ejection (CME) from its birth at the sun towards Earth. As the CME cloud plows through the solar system, it slams into the slower solar wind, a thin stream of plasma constantly blowing from the sun. The collision with the solar wind generates a shock that accelerates electrically charged particles in the solar wind, causing radiation storms that can disrupt sensitive electronics on satellites and cause cancer in unshielded astronauts.
Last Revised: May 17, 2013 17:35:01 UTC
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