NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory – SDO – has been continuously monitoring the Sun, for more than a decade now. SDO has collected 425 million high-resolution photographs of the Sun while orbiting Earth, gathering 20 million terabytes of data over the last ten years. This knowledge has led to several new discoveries regarding the workings of our nearest star and how it affects the solar system.
SDO takes a picture of the Sun every 0.75 seconds using a variety of equipment. The Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) device alone collects photos at ten distinct wavelengths of light every 12 seconds. The photographs in this 10-year time-lapse were shot at a wavelength of 17.1 nanometers, which is an extreme ultraviolet wavelength that depicts the Sun’s outermost atmosphere layer — the corona.
The film condenses a decade of the Sun into 61 minutes by compiling one snapshot every hour. The animation depicts the rise and fall of activity as part of the Sun’s 11-year solar cycle, as well as important occurrences such as transiting planets and eruptions.
You can watch this amazing video below: