<p><strong>A 3-D image of an active <a href="http://science.nationalgeographic.com/science/space/solar-system/sun-article.html">sun</a> shows sunspots and "wonderful active regions in exquisite detail," according to <a href="http://sdo.gsfc.nasa.gov/">NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory</a>. (See where you can get <a href="http://nasa.gov/3D_Glasses.html">3-D glasses to better appreciate this image</a>.) </strong></p><p>A powerful sun storm—associated with the second biggest <a href="http://education.nationalgeographic.com/education/multimedia/solar-flares-cmes/?ar_a=1&amp;ar_r=999">solar flare</a> of the current 11-year sun cycle—hit Earth last week.</p><p>Despite warnings of possible GPS, communications, and power failures, <a href="http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2012/03/120308-solar-flare-storm-sun-space-weather-science-why/">Thursday's sun storm was a softy</a>, scientists say.</p><p>(Also see <a href="http://news.nationalgeographic.com/news/2012/03/120308-solar-flare-storm-sun-space-weather-science-aurora/">"Solar Flare: What If Biggest Known Sun Storm Hit Today?"</a>)</p>

Solar Flare in 3-D

A 3-D image of an active sun shows sunspots and "wonderful active regions in exquisite detail," according to NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory. (See where you can get 3-D glasses to better appreciate this image.)

A powerful sun storm—associated with the second biggest solar flare of the current 11-year sun cycle—hit Earth last week.

Despite warnings of possible GPS, communications, and power failures, Thursday's sun storm was a softy, scientists say.

(Also see "Solar Flare: What If Biggest Known Sun Storm Hit Today?")

Image courtesy SDO/NASA

Space Pictures This Week: 3-D Sun Storm, Mars Devil

See a Martian dust devil, a solar storm in 3-D, and a "surreal" desert in some of our favorite space pictures of last week.

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