Friday, August 09, 2013

The Sun [Infographic]

Beautifully prepared illustrations, highlighting some key aspects about the sole Star of the Solar System.

With news of the impending flip of the Sun's magnetic poles gaining traction, this star is becoming a topic of discussion amongst, both, the the curious & clued-in. This illustration, prepared by the Pune-based Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics [IUCAA], provides a ready reference for all key information & phenomenon associated with the Sun, both on the Sun itself & the effect on Earth, including observations that still hasn't been satisfactorily explained, so far. An excellent teaching tool, if one were in need of one. Learnt that this flipping of the Sun's magnetic field, that occurs every 11 years, is called Schwabe Cycle, & two successive Schwabe Cycles, that restores the orientation of its polarity, is called a Hale Cycle. Mentions the country's maiden solar mission, Aditya-1, that would attempt to answer some vexing questions of Solar Physics, including why the Sun's outer layer, the Corona, is at a higher temperature than the one below it, the Photosphere, despite the latter being closer to the source of heat generation by nuclear fusion.

click on the image to view it in larger size


This chart, also by IUCAA, does a good job of explaining the magnetic field around celestial bodies

click on the image to view it in larger size



Also Read: Ballistic Missile Defense Shield system in Europe [Infographic]