This is a 'closeup' of the sun taken by the Parker Solar Probe, the closest object we've ever sent to the sun (at least until I blast off). I say 'closeup', but the image was still taken at a distance of 16.9-million miles as the probe enters the sun's corona, although that's significantly closer than earth, which is around 93-million miles away. So it's 5.5 times closer. Some more info while I daydream about being aboard the Parker Solar Probe and watching the flesh melt from my bones. "Um, what?" Please, just let me have this:
The image above was taken by the probe's WISPR (Wide-field Imager for Solar Probe) instrument on November 8th and it shows what's known as a coronal streamer. These streamers are made up of solar material within the corona and the tend to occur over regions of increased solar activity. This streamer appeared over the east limb of the sun and includes at least two visible rays. You can also see Jupiter in the background -- the bright spot towards the center.
Fascinating. "Did you even read that?" No, I was busy making myself a snack. "Whatha having?" Cheese and crackers! FUN FACT: I can eat a whole can of spray cheese in one spray without ever slowing down. "I wouldn't call that a fun fact." I wouldn't actually call it a fact either, because I've never finished before puking. "Jesus -- what's wrong with you, GW?" My doctor said everything.
Thanks to Josh J, who agrees we should totally have another space race.