NASA’s 4K View of April 17 Solar Flare

NASA’s 4K View of April 17 Solar Flare

On April 17, 2016, an active region on the sun’s right side released a mid-level solar flare, captured here by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory. This solar ...

Science & Tech

Buried in our screens, buried under a curtain of artificial light, humans can lose connection with an intangible part of our heritage—looking at a sky filled with planets and stars.

Imagining that a nighttime picture from a cosmic observatory is the kind of thing every one of our ancient ancestors saw every time they looked at the night sky is a wild thought.

Yet now we have methods of seeing space that our ancestors didn’t, and it’s thanks to things like Hubble or NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, but also the world’s astronauts and astro-engineers who have been bringing 4K ultra-HD video cameras up to the International Space Station with them.

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In NASA’s video gallery, one can take a vacation from Earth for a few minutes, as well as a broader perspective about one’s place in the world, and the place of one’s planet in the galaxy—all through the advent of positively stunning ultra-HD video quality.

You’ll learn a lot, since the video captions are well-written and, without using too much jargon, don’t spare any details.

Views of the Sun

As a species, sungazing is not recommended. The ultraviolet light emitted from the Sun can quickly damage our eyesight, but the cameras aboard NASA’s suite of solar observatories have no problem spending all year staring right at it.

The videos in the NASA video gallery show our star in 10 different light spectrums, allowing us to see colors of the Sun which our eyes cannot perceive.

They include videos of Mercury—as small as a marble, passing in front of the Sun, of solar flares and coronal mass ejections, and even a one-hour video featuring a solid decade of solar activity measured at one day per second, all in 4K-UHD.