Rivers of sunlight


  • Randy Showstack


Scientists have discovered rivers of hot, electronically charged plasma flowing beneath the surface of the Sun, which may help to explain the sunspot cycle and associated increases in solar activity that can cause power and communications disruptions on Earth. The scientists also found features similar to trade winds that transport gas beneath the Sun's surface.

In late August the Solar Oscillations Investigation Group at Stanford University announced observations they made using an instrument aboard the joint European Space Agency/NASA Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO) spacecraft.