Solar Dynamics Observatory, a NASA satellite, captured amazing pictures of a gigantic tornado moving across the sun.
The tornado is larger than it might look – in fact, it is probably bigger than the Earth, and could extend hundreds of thousands of miles out into space.
And while its progress over the sun’s surface seems almost stately, it is moving at 300,000 miles per hour.
The extraordinary phenomenon – which cannot yet be fully explained by scientists – was filmed by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) over a 30-hour period earlier this month.
That satellite, known as the SDO, is in the middle of a five-year mission to monitor how solar activity affects the Earth, particularly changes in the sun’s magnetic field.
Solar Dynamics Observatory, a NASA satellite, captured amazing pictures of a gigantic tornado moving across the sun
While the tornado – called a “solar prominence” by scientists – looks very similar to twisters here on Earth, its origins are completely different.
Rather than being the result of atmospheric pressure, the solar activity comes from fluctuations in the sun’s magnetism.
However, researchers cannot explain much more than that – NASA’s Terry Kucera told Fox News that she and her colleagues were “still looking to understand what’s happening with these things”.
The tornado, at 15,000 degrees Fahrenheit (8,000 C), is much cooler than its surroundings, which are around 2 million degrees.
The phenomenon was not caught on camera until 1996.
Jellyfish Lake, based on the Pacific island of Palau, is the only place in the world where tourists can safely swim amongst millions of jellyfish because the sometimes deadly creatures have lost their sting.
The lake was once connected to the Pacific Ocean but when the sea level dropped jellyfish became isolated in the algae rich lake.
With no risk of being eaten by predators, the jellyfish population thrived and there is now estimated to be up to 8 million jellyfish living in the lake.
Over time their stings weakened and these amazing images show tourists can now swim alongside the jellyfish without fear of being stung.
Jellyfish Lake, based on the Pacific island of Palau, is the only place in the world where tourists can safely swim amongst millions of jellyfish
Photographer Kevin Davidson joined the brave tourists to capture the mesmerizing beauty of Jellyfish Lake on camera.
Kevin Davidson, 51, who runs a small camera shop in Palau, said: “People who have a fear of jellyfish freak out, some people just turn around and leave, but there are no dangers.
“The jellyfish have evolved into their own subspecies and have slowly lost their stinging cells, some snorkelers may feel a slight sting on more tender parts of the skin, but they’re harmless.
“Swimming in the lake is an experience of a lifetime.
“It’s hard to describe how it feels but it’s unusually quiet and you can just feel hundreds of soft blobs touching your skin as you move slowly through the water.
“Since first visiting the lake almost 15 years ago, it’s become a small obsession. I’ve been hundreds of times, each thinking of a new way to photograph the tourists and the jellies.”