Seven-Day Sun

For seven days SDO’s HMI instrument watched as a small sunspot group morphed, merged and grew into two large sunspots (Nov. 13-19, 2010) as other sunspots begin to emerge as well. We selected an image about every 15 minutes (approximately 700 frames) to generate the smooth motion seen in this 26-second movie. Sunspots are darker, cooler areas of the solar surface generated by intense magnetic forces that rise up from inside the Sun. (credit: Steele Hill and SDO – from the SDO gallery)