Whilst basking in the gentle, glorious and probably brief spring sunshine this week, it is quite easy to forget our nearest star is a huge, swirling and very volatile thing.
This clip filmed by Nasa's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) should rectify that.
Recorded over three years and condensed down to just three minutes it gives an exceptionally vivid view of the Sun as the Earth spins around it.
The video is almost hypnotic
Lunar eclipses, solar flares, coronal mass ejections and even the transit of Venus can be see.
Nasa point out some of the highlights:
- 00:30;24 Partial eclipse by the moon
- 00:31;16 Roll maneuver (where the observatory spins around to calibrate its equipment)
- 01:11;02 August 9, 2011 X6.9 Flare, currently the largest of this solar cycle
- 01:28;07 Comet Lovejoy, December 15, 2011
- 01:42;29 Roll Maneuver
- 01:51;07 Transit of Venus, June 5, 2012
The SDO captures a shot of the Sun every 12 seconds at 10 different wavelengths although this clip only shows two images a day.