We feel our Sun's heat on a warm summer day and we enjoy the comfort. But sometimes we forget to fully appreciate its true magnificence. Here we are treated to the fascinating spectacle of a huge sun spot is it moves toward the solar horizon.
See it for yourself in this incredible video, shared by astrophotographer Andrew McCarthy, who goes by the TikTok handle @cosmic_background.
WATCH VIDEO HERE
The TikTok video touches a bit on a fringe debate about whether the Sun is actually round or flat. The comments on the clip offer some interesting back-and-forth between McCarthy and some users.
"Can you photograph the Moon when it's present during the day?" a user asks.
"Yep!" McCarthy replies. "I do it all the time. In fact, all the crescent phases in my pinned video were captured during the day, but edited to look like night and match."
"The question is, are we looking straight through the lens?" inquires a commenter. "As if your own eye was touching it? Or is it all getting sent to a computer making up said images?"
"I do both visual astronomy and astrophotography, so yes sometimes I’m just looking at this stuff," writes McCarthy. "The computer has to connect to the camera to share with you."
"If you wanted to do something, record what stars actually look like," says a reader with what he thinks is a challenge.
To which McCarthy simply replies, "That’s exactly what this is."
"This is amazing stuff you do!" acknowledges a reader. "You do this just for yourself? Do companies or agencies come to you to do stuff for them?"
"I just do it because I enjoy it!" replies McCarthy. "Every so often journalists ask if they can use stuff."
A user makes another statement about not believing the footage is real. "See, the fact that we can see the Sun that close in a telescope makes me think the Sun is not 93 million miles away."
"That’s because it’s hard to wrap your head around how huge it is," McCarthy points out. "The thing is massive."
"The Sun is not flat, it's local," declares a viewer of the video. "But the Earth is flat. The Sun has nothing to do with space because it's in our atmosphere."
In response, McCarthy answers, "You can’t possibly actually believe this? I’m an astronomer. Happy to answer any questions about how this stuff works. Astrophysics can be hard!"
We find it very strange to encounter as many science deniers in the comments as we did. But instead of focusing on that silliness, we just want to thank @cosmic_background for sharing these amazing images. It's a job well done. And we'll continue to keep an eye on his work and publish more as it becomes available.
Recommended for you