Eyeing up the total solar eclipse

Eyeing up the total solar eclipse


17/12/2012 12:00 pm


J.M. Lecleire, S. Koutchmy, CNRS/CNES, Proba-2/SWAP, SOHO/LASCO, ESA & NASA


The Sun appears to be eyeballing us in this unique portrayal of the total solar eclipse of 13/14 November 2012, which combines ground-based images (blue ring) with views from ESA’s Proba-2 (false-colour central disc) and ESA/NASA’s SOHO satellites (background).

Loops of magnetic field lines and ‘streamers’ can clearly be seen in the ground-based white-light images, spilling over into the corresponding wide-field view from SOHO as the solar wind blows these features out into space.

The connection between the ground- and space-based images provides a unique opportunity to correlate difficult-to-see regions of the Sun’s atmosphere, visible only during the fleeting moments of a total solar eclipse, with well-known features on the solar disc and the wider solar environment.

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