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NASA Satellite Captures Massive Eruption and 'Canyon of Fire' on the Sun

A magnetic filament of solar material erupted on the sun in late September, breaking calm conditions in a dramatic way. The 200,000 mile-long filament ripped through the sun's atmosphere, the corona, leaving behind what looks like a canyon of fire. Visualizers at NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center combined satellite data from the Solar Dynamics Observatory to create this short video. Different wavelengths help capture different aspects of events in the corona. The red images shown in the video help highlight plasma at temperatures of 90,000° F and are good for observing filaments as they form and erupt. The yellow images, showing temperatures at 1,000,000° F, are useful for observing material coursing along the sun's magnetic field lines, seen in the video as an arcade of loops across the area of the eruption. The browner images show material at temperatures of 1,800,000° F, and it is here where the 'canyon of fire' imagery is most apparent.