75,000+ Images of the Sun’s Surface Form Haunting Time-Lapse

Don’t look right into the sun. We bet you were told that a lot as a child. But now, you can look right into the sun. And you should. Because it’s pretty cool in there… or should we say, hot. Creator Seán Doran invites us to glimpse the full extent of the sun’s haunting beauty with this mesmerizing time-lapse video. The video, which we first saw on Colossal, takes the viewers right to the surface of the sun. And it offers full aesthetic vibes.

Doran shares:

78,846 frames of ångström-171 data from Solar Dynamics Observatory were repaired, processed & rescaled to create the film, which is the month of August from 2014. These frames amount to 22 minutes of footage at 60 frames per second. The opposite limb of the Sun is shown in the second half of the film.

We know a trip to the sun wouldn’t really go like this. By which we mean, come complete with atmospheric music right out of The Lord of the Rings and gently leaping gold spires. But you can truly get lost in the time-lapse. And it will make feel like your Frodo, gazing down at the fires of Mount Doom, as Elves sing a lament. A deleted scene that would fit right in, truly.

A beautiful image of the sun's surface from a relaxing timelapse video
Seán Doran

Of course, a trip to the sun’s surface probably wouldn’t come with anything at all… Because the sun does not curate a friendly environment for visiting humans. But this video lets us envision all our cosmic dreams. Magical plumes of dancing plasma arc between sunspots, or “dark areas that become apparent at the Sun’s photosphere as a result of intense magnetic flux pushing up from further within the solar interior.”  NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory brings us the data and imaging and Doran brings us the beauty.

This makes sense because according to their channel, Doran works to “transform satellite data into compelling art & media.” We think they nail it. Beyond the sun’s surface, Doran has created all manner of breathtaking videos including some highlighting the aurora borealis and the moon. These videos offer the perfect blend of magic and science.

So put one on and enjoy. If you need us, you can find us communing with galactic spirits.

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