XRT Picture of the Week (XPOW)

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2016 July 06

Click for movie. Also available on YouTube.

On this day...

The solar activity is currently in decline as part of the 11-year solar cycle. However, on this day in 2012, the sun was a very exciting place.

On July 6, 2012 the sun caught 10 different flares, from a C3.8 to an X1.1. All of the flares came from the same active region, AR11515. This movie shows the largest of these events: the X1.1 flare. You can see the movie jump in the middle when the flare is at its peak. This is because XRT can automatically detect when a flare is happening, and will respond by shifting the images so that the flare is in the center. Once the flare response is over, the images move back to their regularly scheduled position.

The movie is also noticably saturated. While unsaturated images exist, they do not show the material being ejected at the beginning of the flare as clearly. So while thicker filters and shorter exposure times prevent saturation, it is still useful to have these saturated images to pick out the fainter details.

Keywords: Solar Cycle, Flare
Filters: Ti_poly

(Prepared by Nicole Schanche)

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