By using this service and related content, you agree to the use of cookies for analytics, personalised content and ads.
You are using an older browser version. Please use a supported version for the best MSN experience.

NASA: Massive sunspot's core is larger than Earth

USA TODAY logo USA TODAY 14/07/2017 Mary Bowerman

UP NEXT
UP NEXT
NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured footage of a massive sunspot that seems to be growing quickly. 

 The space agency posted video on YouTube on Wednesday showing the sunspot which appears as a dark area on the sun's surface. Sunspots aren't uncommon, and while they look like dark blobs, they are actually tight bundles of strong magnetic fields that are slightly cooler than surrounding areas, making them appear darker. 

Occasionally sunspots can release solar flares and eject clouds of solar material, which can both be accompanied by blasts of charged particles. While Earth's magnetic field protects people from space weather, it can disrupt technology. 

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory said it's “too early to predict” whether there will be solar flares, the New York Daily News reported. 

NASA captured the footage of the sunspot, which is called Active Region 12665, between July 5 and 11. 

According to NASA, the sun was spotless for two days, and the sunspot is the only one on the sun at this moment. 

While the sunspot seems tiny, looks can be deceiving, the agency said.

"Like freckles on the face of the sun, they appear to be small features, but size is relative: The dark core of this sunspot is actually larger than Earth," NASA said on YouTube. 

 

AdChoices
AdChoices

More From USA TODAY

image beaconimage beaconimage beacon