The Sun

The Center of the Universe

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The Sun's Layers

The sun has 6 Layers
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The Core

  • central, center region of the sun
  • where nuclear reactions take hydrogen and form helium
  • the reactions release energy that leaves the suns surface as light
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The Radiative Zone

  • energy is generated by nuclear fusion in the core
  • it moves outward as electromagnetic radiation
  • energy is conveyed by photons
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The Convective Zone

  • energy is transported by convection in the convective zone
  • the surface of this zone is where photons are created
  • top layer is called the photosphere
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The Photosphere

  • the visible surface of the sun
  • about 100 km thick
  • where solar light appears to be emitted
  • not solid
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The Chromospere

  • emits reddish glow as hot hydrogen burns off
  • can only be seen during a solar eclipse
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The Corona

  • the aura of plasma that surrounds the sun and other planets
  • most easily seen during a solar eclipse
  • can be seen with a coronagraph
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Sunspots

  • dark spots that appear on the suns surface due to the suns magnetic field rising up to the photosphere
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Prominence

  • a large bright arc of gas extending outward from the surface of the sun
  • strong magnetic fields hold a prominence above the suns surface
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Solar Flare

  • when the high, intense radiation erupts on the sun's surface
  • caused by magnetic field of the sun
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Aurora

  • auroras appear as bright dancing lights
  • causes by collisions between electrically charged particles from the sun that enter the earth's atmosphere
  • seen above north and south poles
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