The Inouye Solar Telescope has captured a mesmerizing image of the Sun’s atmosphere to mark the first anniversary of the solar telescope’s operation.
Earth has faced numerous solar flares these past few months and more are expected as the Sun moves ahead in its 11-year solar cycle, resulting in increased solar activity and solar output. As many as 32 Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) have been observed emitting from the Sun in the past couple of weeks. Taking images of the Sun is a difficult task as it requires a strong telescope which can capture the giant star. The Inouye Solar Telescope has achieved this amazing feat.
The U.S. National Science Foundation’s Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope has captured a stunning image of the Sun’s chromosphere, the area of the Sun’s atmosphere above the surface. Hair-like plasma, known as granules, across a region of nearly 82,500 kilometers can be seen in the image, according to the press release issued by the National Science Foundation (NSF). The stunning image of the Sun was taken at 486.13 nanometers using the hydrogen-beta line from the Balmer series, according to the NSO.
What is the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope?
According to the NSF, the Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope is the world’s most powerful solar telescope commissioned after 25 years of meticulous research. It is mounted at the top of the Maui volcano Haleakala in Hawaii. The telescope has marked one year of being in service with the release of this stunning image of the Sun.
Sethuraman Panchanathan, NSF director said in the press release, “NSF’s Inouye Solar Telescope is the world’s most powerful solar telescope that will forever change the way we explore and understand our Sun. Its insights will transform how our nation, and the planet, predict and prepare for events like solar storms.”
The Inouye Solar Telescope has also gathered important data for various space agencies around the world and has worked with NASA’s Parker Solar Probe and ESA and NASA’s Solar Orbiter to conduct solar observations.