SCIENCE
11/11/2014 03:05 pm ET Updated Dec 06, 2017

Biggest Sunspot In Decades Shines In Stunning New Time-Lapse Video

A mesmerizing new time-lapse video (above) captures the fiery magnificence of what's believed to be the largest sunspot observed in the past 24 years.

Dubbed AR 2192, the “freakishly huge” sunspot spanned some 80,000 miles, or about the same size as the diameter of Jupiter.

sunspot

The video was created by Infinity Imagined science blogger James Tyrwhitt-Drake, who stitched together more than 17,000 images of the spot snapped by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory.

The video condenses 16.5 days into less than eight minutes, according to CNET.

Tyrwhitt-Drake also created a clip that zooms in on the sunspot (below):

What caused the sunspot to be so big? NASA scientist C. Alex Young told Space.com that experts "really don’t know.”

"Being close to solar maximum [the peak in the sun's 11-year solar cycle] means there is more concentrated magnetic field and magnetic energy under the solar surface waiting to bubble up," Young said. "But the question of why it comes up as one spot instead of two or more is really still unknown, a mystery."

HuffPost

BEFORE YOU GO

PHOTO GALLERY
The Many Faces Of The Sun
CONVERSATIONS