] The Virtual Sun - Photosphere

The surface of the Sun - The Photosphere

The photosphere is what you see when you look at the sun. The picture to the left is a recent photograph taken in normal light.

Click on the image for a larger version.

Each square centimeter of the solar surface emits as much light as a 6000 Watt lamp.

Click on the movie icon to the right to see a time-lapse movie of the photosphere in 1995. Click 'Settings' at any time to change your movie preferences.

As you see there were very little sun spots in 1995. A few years later this was very different. Click on the movie projector to the right to see the photosphere in 1999.

If you compare the two movies, you will see that the number of sun spots changes quite rapidly. The picture below, of the surface of the sun, was taken when there were many sunspots.

Click on the part of the image you want to know more about: