The sun is more than 92 million miles away, but you can almost feel a ripple of heat when watching NASA‘s incredible footage of its fiery hiccup.
The burst comes from a coronal mass ejection (CME) that erupted from the sun this week, creating a gigantic rolling wave of fire.
NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) caught the explosion on camera. While it’s only 13 seconds long, the video covers about two and a half hours, so the seemingly slow-mo bubble is actually sped up a lot. The footage was taken in extreme ultraviolet light, a method commonly used in solar imaging.
CMEs — massive bursts of solar winds often associated with solar flares — can shoot more than 1 billion tons of particles into space at a speed faster than 1 million miles per hour. According to NASA, this particular CME that occurred May 1 is not headed our way, so it won’t pose any threat to Earth.
This event pales by comparison to April’s massive solar flare. According to SDO, it was the most powerful solar flare of the year. The flare was so big that it temporarily knocked out radio communications on Earth.