How Big is a Solar Flare Relative to the Earth?

February 8, 2014 at 6:38 PM 1 comment

I can’t say I’ve given much deep thought to solar flares or their size, which I know varies, but I had a vague notion, of course, that they were ginormous and flared thousands of miles into space.  Wrong.  More like millions of miles into space.  They are incomprehensiblynormous.   Holy cow.  Look at the little ol’ Earth down there:

Solar Flare Earth to scale via

This image shows the Earth to scale with a colossal solar filament eruption from the sun on Aug. 31, 2012 as seen by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory spacecraft. Credit: NASA/SDO/GSFC via

I don’t think I’ve ever seen an illustration like this that adds perspective to (1) the size of the Earth relative to a solar flare or (2) the size of the Sun relative to the Earth.  Seriously informative and interesting.  Thanks to and NASA.




Entry filed under: Science.

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1 Comment Add your own

  • 1. coconutspeak  |  February 9, 2014 at 12:28 AM

    I bet the GOP talking heads are saying something like ‘there’s your problem to global warming …. it’s the sun bearing down on us. We need to boycott that damn left wing sun!’

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