Solar Regions

Astronomers identify four major regions within the sun.

  1. First there is the sun’s Core , the central region where nuclear fusion occurs. This is a very high temperature gaseous soup of charged particles called plasma at 15 million degrees.
  2. Next is the Radiative Zone , where energy generated in the core is carried by light that bounces from particle to particle through the Radiative Zone.
  3. Above the radiative zone is the Interface Layer , where it is thought the sun’s magnetic field is generated. This layer or zone lies between the Radiative and Convective Zones.
  4. The Convective Zone is the region in which energy is transported outward by convection; 70% of the sun’s radius. Convection occurs because heated fluids rise and cooler fluids fall. Convection is the area of the sun which shows rising heat – recall that heat rises and cold falls.
Diagram showing the four major regions of the sun, the connective zone, radiative zone, interface zone, and core.
Regions of the SunPublic Domain | Image courtesy of NASA.