Satellite Spies Gargantuan Sunspots that Could Launch Solar Explosions Toward Earth

Looking a bit like nasty bruises, a cluster of truly massive sunspots appeared on the Sun’s surface starting in mid-October. Their collective surface area, measuring 66 times larger than the Earth’s cross section, was the largest in the last 24 years, according to the National Astronomical Observatory of Japan.

The sunspots produced six major solar solar flares before the sun’s rotation swung them out of view to the Hinode spacecraft in early November, which captured the images above.

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