The European Space Agency’s Solar Orbiter gas captured the Sun’s full disc, outer atmosphere, including the corona, in unprecedented detail. These images were taken when Solar Orbiter was approximately 75 million kilometers, half way between our world and its parent star, using its Extreme Ultraviolet Imager (EUI), which takes pictures of such high spatial resolution that, at that close distance, a mosaic of 25 individual images is needed to cover the entire Sun.
The full image is so large that it was captured over a period of more than four hours since each tile takes about 10 minutes to photograph, including the time for the spacecraft to point from one segment to the next. In all, the final image contains more than 83 million pixels in a 9148 x 9112 pixel grid, or a resolution that is 10-times sharper than what a 4K TV screen can display.
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Photo credit: ESA & NASA/Solar Orbiter/EUI team; Data processing: E. Kraaikamp (ROB)
On March 26, Solar Orbiter reaches another mission milestone: its first close perihelion. The spacecraft is now inside the orbit of Mercury, the inner planet, taking the highest resolution images of the Sun it can take. It is also recording data on the solar wind of particles that flows outwards from the Sun,” said the ESA.