AN EXPLOSION WAITING TO HAPPEN? Suddenly, huge filaments of magnetism are rising and falling on the northeastern edge of the sun. James Kevin Ty saw them on May 9th as the sun rose over Manila, the Philippines. He took this picture using a ZWO megapixel astronomy camera and a Daystar solar filter tuned to the red glow of solar hydrogen:
They might soon become explosive. Prominences like these are, essentially, vast tubes of magnetism filled with hot plasma. If any magnetic lines of force cross as the filaments seethe--bang!--the crossing could trigger a ferocious explosion. The process is called "magnetic reconnection."
Astronomers with solar telescopes are encouraged to monitor developments. Today, the edge of the sun could be entertaining indeed.