Photos: Huge Solar Flare Eruptions of 2012

Big Flare From Sunspot 1426: March 5, 2012


This image from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory shows the sun as it appeared in extreme ultraviolet wavelengths on March 5, 2012 just after a major solar flare.

Sunspot 1429 Close Up


This view of the sun taken by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory shows the active sunspot region 1429 as it appeared at 11:30 p.m. ET on March 5, 2012 to the spacecraft's Helioseismic and Magnetic Imager. The region unleashed a major X-class flare just one minute before this view was taken.

Coronal Mass Ejections from X-Class Solar Flares - March 6, 2012


A wave of solar plasma and charged particles, called a coronal mass ejection, were triggered by the strong X-class flares on March 6, 2012. This image, from NASA's sun-watching Solar Terrestrial Relations Observatory (or Stereo) spacecraft also shows a possible second coronal mass ejection.

X-Class Solar Flare - March 6, 2012 X-Class Solar Flare - March 6, 2012


A massive X-class solar flare spewed from the sun on March 6, 2012. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory observed the eruption, which looks like a sparkling diamond in this picture. [Read more about the X-class flares]

Huge X5.4-class Solar Flare


The sun unleashed two massive X-class solar flares on March 6, 2012. The flare erupted from the giant active sunspot AR1429.

Active Sunspot Region 1429


The massive sunspot region AR1429 has been particularly active since it emerged on March 2, 2012.

X-Class Solar Flare Seen by SDO - March 6, 2012


NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory caught the huge X-class solar flare erupting from the surface of the sun on March 6, 2012.

Sun Unleashes X5.4-Class Solar Flare


This image from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory shows the sun as it unleashed an X5.4-class solar flare at 7:04 p.m. EST on March 6, 2012 (0002 March 7 GMT). The flare appears as the bright spot in the upper left.

X1 Solar Flare


X1 Solar Flare of March 5, 2012

Sun Unleashes X1.1 Solar Flare: March 4, 2012


This still from a NASA video shows the sun as it unleashed a major solar flare overnight on March 4 and 5, 2012. The solar storm was an X1.1-class flare, the strongest type of solar eruption, and ejected a huge cloud of plasma into space.

X1-class Solar Flare - March 2012


The Solar Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) caught the extreme ultraviolet flash of an X1-class solar flare at 11:13 p.m. EST (0413 GMT March 5).

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