Last week, a massive 14-Earths-tall tornado was spotted on the Sun’s surface. It was a real treat for everyone who watched it, even just in a video. But photographers Andrew McCarthy and Jason Guenzel did more than just observe. The two photographers teamed up and captured the solar tornado in an exquisite 140 MP image.
It took 200,000 photos, tons of data, and several days to complete, but it was worth it. The duo ended up with a jaw-dropping, super-sharp image of the incredible phenomenon. And I’m happy to say that they shared it with DIYP, along with some info about how they took it.
[Related reading: Watch: 14-earths tall tornado hurls across the Sun’s surface]
The solar tornado occurred on Saturday, March 18. As it collapsed, it caused the ejection of the solar atmosphere’s material into the surrounding space. Andrew didn’t waste time – he spent three hours observing and shooting this magnificent sight through his solar telescope. He ended up taking 200,000 photos, and about 90,000 of them were used to create the final composite photo.
Jason stepped in to help Andrew with the data and process it all. With joined forces, the two artists got the clearest, sharpest look either of them has ever done for the full solar disc. I mean, just look at this!
“The solar Corona is actually invisible optically against the glare of the sun,” Andrew explains. “So to get a scientifically plausible look at it, we used NASA’s SOHO data as a reference to geometrically transform Jason’s 2017 eclipse photo to match the features.” The resulting image is “a blend of science and art,” as Andrew explains it, adding that it’s his favorite piece of work he’s been a part of. Honestly, I think this is my favorite Andrew’s image so far… But I have no doubts that he’ll change my mind with the next one he creates, they just keep getting better!
Make sure to follow Andrew and Jason on Instagram, and check out their websites (Andrew |Jason) for more of their splendid work!
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