The dark area capping the northern polar region of the Sun is a coronal hole, a magnetically open area on the Sun from which high-speed solar wind escapes into space.
Such high-speed solar wind streams can spark magnificent auroral displays on Earth when they collide with our planet’s magnetic field.
Active regions are areas of intense and complex magnetic fields on the Sun – linked to sunspots – that are prone to erupting with solar flares or explosions of material called coronal mass ejections.For example, a coronal hole – a magnetically open area from which high-speed solar wind is released into space – caps the northern polar region on the sun
These eruptions of magnetized solar material can create space weather effects on Earth when they collide with our planet’s magnetosphere, or magnetic environment – including aurora, satellite disruptions, and, when extreme, even power outagesAn active sun is shown on another stamp, highlighting areas of intense and complex magnetic fields on the sun that are prone to erupting with solar flares or explosionsA plasma blast is shown with a coronal mass ejection – an eruption of magnetized solar material that can create space weather effects on Earth
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