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Monday, January 5, 2015

NASA detects enormous 'coronal hole' on Sun’s South Pole (PHOTO)

Image from nasa.gov
RT | Jan 4, 2015

A giant dark hole has appeared on the sun’s flaming surface, a recently-taken NASA picture has revealed. So far, scientists are stumped by why this spectacular phenomenon, known as a “coronal hole,” occurs.

The Sun starts 2015 with an enormous coronal hole near the South Pole,” scientists of NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory wrote in their blog, having posted a picture of the flaming sun with a gaping dark space in its lower part.

READ MORE: Spectacular space: The most stunning, mind-boggling photos & videos of 2014!

What modern science knows is that “coronal holes” are places where particles leave the sun’s surface at huge speeds - of up to 500 miles per hour (800 kilometers per hour). What’s still unclear is why this is happening.

The sun’s glowing comes from the “trapped” particles. The coronal holes “contain little solar material, have lower temperatures, and therefore, appear much darker.”

The first pictures of the phenomenon were taken by NASA astronauts in the early 1970s.

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