CICLOPS: Cassini Imaging Central Laboratory for OPerationS
Pulses from the Sun

Pulses from the Sun
PIA 17669

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  The dark region seen on the face of the sun at the end of March 2013 is a coronal hole (just above and to the right of the middle of the picture), which is a source of fast solar wind leaving the sun. As it traveled through the solar system, this high-speed stream of plasma pushed up against slower solar wind ahead of it, and eventually formed a high-pressure region. This high-pressure region crashed into Saturn's magnetic bubble several weeks later in May 2013, causing bright auroral displays.

This image was obtained by the atmospheric imaging assembly on NASA's Solar Dynamic Observatory on March 28, 2013.

The Cassini Solstice Mission is a joint United States and European endeavor. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, manages the mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. The Cassini orbiter was designed, developed and assembled at JPL. The imaging team consists of scientists from the US, England, France, and Germany. The imaging operations center and team lead (Dr. C. Porco) are based at the Space Science Institute in Boulder, Colo.

For more information about the Cassini Solstice Mission visit, and

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/SSI
Released: February 11, 2014 (PIA 17669)
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