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Three year solar time-lapse shows the sun's explosions

You are not meant to stare at the sun. But when it looks like this it is hard to take your eyes off it.

For the past three years one of NASA's satellites has been keeping a close eye on it and it has produced some stunning images which have been shrunk into a time-lapse video.

Part of NASA's three year time-lapse of the sun Credit: NASA

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory tracked the sun as it reached it peak phase in solar activity - something that happens every 11 years.

The satellite took two images of the sun every day for three years as it reached this phase, known to scientists as 'solar maximum'.

The sun appears to change in size - that is because its distance to the satellite changes over time.

The end result is pretty impressive for something that orbits Earth at 6,876 mph while Earth orbits the sun at 67,062 mph.

Watch the stunning results below: