CMEs Galore. Coronal mass ejections were popping out from the Sun at a pace of two per day on average (Apr. 18-23, 2013). We counted ten CMEs for the five days, but some of the eruptions were complex and difficult to differentiate from one another. Almost all of them blew particles out to the left, most of them probably originating from the same active region. These were taken by the STEREO (Ahead) spacecraft’s coronagraph, in which the black disk blocks the Sun (represented by the white circle) so that we can observe the fainter features beyond it. Credit: NASA/STEREO/Steele Hill
A coronal mass ejection is a massive burst of solar wind and magnetic fields rising above the solar corona or being released into space. Coronal mass ejections are often associated with other forms of solar activity, most notably solar flares, but a causal relationship has not been established. Most ejections originate from active regions on the Sun's surface, such as groupings of sunspots associated with frequent flares. Near solar maxima the Sun produces about three CMEs every day, whereas near solar minima there is about one CME every five days.
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