A small prominence observed in profile arched up and sent streams of plasma curling back into the sun over a 30-hour period (Dec. 13-14, 2017). We are observing charged particles streaming along magnetic field lines made visible in extreme ultraviolet light. Prominences are cooler strands of plasma tethered above the sun's surface by magnetic forces. They are quite unstable and frequently fall apart within hours or days.
SDO is managed by NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center, Greenbelt, Maryland, for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington. Its Atmosphere Imaging Assembly was built by the Lockheed Martin Solar Astrophysics Laboratory (LMSAL), Palo Alto, California.