The Parts Of The Sun | Atmosphere | ScienceMonk

The sun is a star that was formed approximately 4.6 billion years ago. But what exactly sun is made up of? Is it solid, liquid or gaseous or the combination of these. The collapse of a giant cloud consisting of hydrogen and helium resulted in the formation of this giant ever glowing celestial body, the sun. It is the brightest component of the solar system and the life-sustaining source of life on earth.

Parts Of The Sun

The primary chemical components of the sun include helium and hydrogen accounting for about 98% of the sun’s mass. The remaining elements that contribute to the composition are oxygen, carbon, neon, iron, magnesium, nickel, chromium, sulfur, and silicon.


Source of Suns Energy

The source of the sun’s energy is nuclear fusion reaction between two hydrogen nuclei present in the sun in huge amount which forms heavy nucleus helium along with a huge amount of energy. 

The Atmosphere of the Sun

The atmosphere of the sun is composed of several layers, but the three main layers that play an important role are the heliosphere, the chromosphere, and the corona. The sun’s energy that radiates from its interior layers is seen as sunlight in these outer layers.

  • Heliosphere:

The outermost layer of the solar atmosphere filled with energetic particles as well as the solar wind.

  • The Chromosphere:

Lies above 2000 km above the photosphere. A reddish glow is emitted from this layer. The red rim can be seen during a total eclipse. This layer may play an essential role in conducting heat from the interior of the sun to its outermost layer, the corona. Its temperature increases up to 20,000 degrees Celsius.

  • The Corona:

This layer starts around 10,000 km above the photosphere. An exciting feature of the corona is the solar wind which consists of waves that blow to the other parts of the solar system. The waves are commonly known as coronal plasma or loops. At 20000-25000 km away from the solar surface corona has an average temperature of 1,000,000 to 2,000,000 million degrees Celsius.

Parts Of The Sun

Zones or Parts of the Sun

From the center out, the layers of the Sun are as follows: the solar interior is composed of the core, the radiative zone, and the convective zone.

  • The Core

According to astrophysicists, this is the hottest zone of the Sun. It has high pressure and a temperature of around 15.7 million kelvin. This high temperature and pressure cause nuclear fusion involving hydrogen and helium combining together which results in the product consisting of heat and light to penetrate to other zones of the earth and to the remaining parts of the solar system. The core occupies 25% of the Sun’s radius.

  • The Radiative Zone

This zone has a much lower temperature than that of the core ranging from 2-7 million kelvin. This zone absorbs some of the energy that radiates through the core without which there would be no life on the earth. The radiative zone occupies about 70% of the Sun’s radius.

  • The Convective Zone

Consisting of heavier materials this forms the outermost layer of the sun. The temperature is around 6000, and heat transfer takes place through convection.

  • The Photosphere

The convective zone extends to the photosphere. Bright bubbling granules of plasma and darker cooler sunspots mark the photosphere. The photosphere is the source of the solar flares that produce X-rays, ultraviolet radiation, electromagnetic radiation, and radio waves. Its temperature is less than 5800 Kelvin.


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