Email the Webmaster!!!!!


This Page was last updated on December 20, 2021

Mission to the Sun

Locations of Site Visitors

Mission to the SUN: PAGE Table of Contents



Outward Bound: Colonizing the Sun

We contemplate colonizing planets, but what about the stars themselves? Visit our sponsor, Brilliant: Containing virtually all the mass and resources of the solar system, the Sun, the Sun is the ultimate asset for a growing interplanetary civilization. While typically assumed too hot to touch and so out of our reach, we will challenge that notion today. Sign up to my weekly email newsletter: Support us at:Support us at: Follow us on Tumblr: More stories at Follow us on Twitter: @universetoday Like us on Facebook: Instagram - Team: Fraser Cain - @fcain / /Karla Thompson - @karlaii Chad Weber - Chloe Cain - Instagram: @chloegwen2001 Music: Left Spine Down - ďX-RayĒ Graphics Team: Edward Nardella Jeremy Jozwik Jarred Eagley Justin Dixon Jeremy Jozwik Katie Byrne Kris Holland/Mafic Studios: Luuk Warringa Misho Yordanov Murat Mamkegh Nick Talmers Nieuwoudt Pierre Demet Sergio Botero Stefan Blandin Script Editing: Andy Popescu Connor Hogan Edward Nardella Eustratius Graham Gregory Leal Jefferson Eagley Keith Blockus Luca de Rosa Mark Warburton Michael Gusevsky Mitch Armstrong MolbOrg Naomi Kern Philip Baldock Sigmund Kopperud Steve Cardon Tiffany Penner Music: Markus Junnikkala, "Hail the Victorious Dead" Miguel Johnson, "So Many Stars" Chris Zabriskie, "I should have been more human" Miguel Johnson, "Exodus" Miguel Johnson, "A Planet Found" A.J. Prasad, "Aether"

Google's animation for the August 2017 eclipse

Sun Blasts an X-Class Flare at the Earth You know the drill, the Sun has blasted a major flare at us (two in fact).
That means it's time to head out, watch the skies, and hope to see a beautiful aurora display.

The Sun is less active magnetically than other stars

Our Sun is the source of life on Earth. Its calm glow across billions of years has allowed life to evolve and flourish on our world. This does not mean our Sun doesnít have an active side. We have observed massive solar flares, such as the 1859 Carrington event, which produced northern lights as far south as the Caribbean, and drove electrical currents in telegraph lines. If such a flare occurred in Earthís direction today, it would devastate our electrical infrastructure. But fortunately for us, the Sun is mostly calm. Unusually calm when compared to other stars.

An ice core from the West Antarctic Ice Sheet. Credit: Heidi Roop, NSF Longer studies have looked at isotopes of carbon and other elements in ice cores and tree rings. When the Sun is particularly active, high-energy protons can strike atoms in the upper atmosphere, converting them into radioactive isotopes. They can then become trapped in ice and wood. This gives us an idea of solar activity across nearly ten millennia.

Brightness variations of the Sun compared to the star KIC 7849521. Credit: MPS

Solar Interior

The interior structure of the Sun. Credit: Wikipedia Commons/kelvinsong

Peering into the solar interior.

Solar Flare March, 2015 toward the earth

The sun emitting the solar flare, seen in 304 angstrom light.
The flare was directed toward Earth, reported, and that meant it caused a bit of trouble for earthlings.
According to NOAA's Space Weather Prediction Center, radiation released by the flare caused a radio blackout.
Solar flares occur when magnetic energy that has built up in the solar atmosphere is suddenly released.

Holiday Lights on the Sun: Imagery of a Solar Flare

The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 7:28 p.m. EST on Dec. 19, 2014.
NASAís Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.
Solar flares are powerful bursts of radiation. Harmful radiation from a flare cannot pass through Earth's atmosphere
to physically affect humans on the ground, however -- when intense enough -- they can disturb the atmosphere
in the layer where GPS and communications signals travel. This flare is classified as an X1.8-class flare.
X-class denotes the most intense flares, while the number provides more information about its strength.
An X2 is twice as intense as an X1, an X3 is three times as intense, etc.

NASA | Phoenix Prominence Eruption

Published on May 1, 2015 Over a six-hour period on April 21, 2015, NASA's Solar Dyanmics Observatory (SDO) observed a wing-like prominence eruption. SDO views the sun in various wavelengths of the extreme ultravoilet, including 171 (shown in gold) and 304 (shown in orange) angstroms. : "This video is public domain and can be downloaded Or find NASA Goddard Space Flight Center on Facebook: Or find us on Twitter: Category Science & Technology

Moon Photobombs the Sun in Amazing View from NASA Spacecraft

5-Million-Degree Plasma 'Tornado' Rages on the Sun

A giant, swirling plume of superheated plasma churned above the surface of the sun for 40 hours last week
while a NASA spacecraft looked on.
NASA's sun-studying Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) captured dramatic time-lapse video of the solar tornado,
which raged from Sept. 1 through Sept. 3.(2015)



New Mission: DSCOVR Satellite will Monitor the Solar Wind

Artistís concept of the DSCOVR satellite, which will provide real-time solar wind monitoring to the National Weather Service. Credit: NOAA
Solar wind Ė that is, the stream of charged electrons and protons that are released from the upper atmosphere of the Sun Ė
is a constant in our Solar System and generally not a concern for us Earthlings. However, on occasion a solar wind shock wave or
Coronal Mass Ejection can occur, disrupting satellites, electronics systems, and even sending harmful radiation to the surface.

Amazing Views of Todayís Total Solar Eclipse From EarthÖ and Space by DAVID DICKINSON on MARCH 20, 2015

The view of todayís eclipse (03-20-2015)from low Earth orbit. Credit: ESA/Proba-2.
Thereís an old Robert Heinlein saying that goes ďclimate is what you expect, weather is what you get,Ē
And the weather certainly kept folks guessing right up until the start of todayís eclipse. And though much of the
UK and tracks along the Faroe Islands were clouded out, folks who made the trek up to Svalbard were treated to a fine view of totality,
while observers across Europe caught stages of the eclipse through its partial phases.
Many more managed to capture glimpses of the eclipse thanks to our good friends over at Slooh and the Virtual Telescope project.

This Video About Solar Superstorms is Narrated by Benedict Cumberbatch and It Looks Awesome.
by JASON MAJOR on JUNE 2, 2015

Whatís better than a full 180-degree digital theater experience that takes you into the heart of our Sun
to see how solar storms form? Why, all of that accompanied by a rumbling narration by Benedict Cumberbatch, of course.

NuSTAR Stares at the Sun

Flaring, active regions of our sun are highlighted in this new image combining observations from several telescopes.
High-energy X-rays from NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array (NuSTAR) are shown in blue; low-energy X-rays from Japan's Hinode
spacecraft are green; and extreme ultraviolet light from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) is yellow and red. All three telescopes captured their solar images around the same time on April 29, 2015. The NuSTAR image is a mosaic
made from combining smaller images. The active regions across the sunís surface contain material heated to several millions of degrees.
The blue-white areas showing the NuSTAR data pinpoint the most energetic spots. During the observations, microflares went off,
which are smaller versions of the larger flares that also erupt from the sun's surface. The microflares rapidly release energy and heat
the material in the active regions.
NuSTAR typically stares deeper into the cosmos to observe X-rays from supernovas, black holes and other extreme objects.
But it can also look safely at the sun and capture images of its high-energy X-rays with more sensitivity than before.
Scientists plan to continue to study the sun with NuSTAR to learn more about microflares, as well as hypothesized nanoflares,
which are even smaller.
In this image, the NuSTAR data shows X-rays with energies between 2 and 6 kiloelectron volts; the Hinode data, which is from the X-ray Telescope
instrument, has energies of 0.2 to 2.4 kiloelectron volts; and the Solar Dynamics Observatory data, taken using the Atmospheric
Imaging Assembly instrument, shows extreme ultraviolet light with wavelengths of 171 and 193 Angstroms.
Note the green Hinode image frame edge does not extend as far as the SDO ultraviolet image, resulting in the green portion
of the image being truncated on the right and left sides.
Image credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/GSFC/JAXA Last Updated: July 30, 2015 Editor: Tony Greicius

Giant Filament Seen on the Sun -- Feb. 10, 2015

NASA's Heliophysics Gallery

Facts on NASA's Heliophysics Gallery

National Aeronautics and Space Administration Goddard Space Flight Center

NASA's Living with a star program

National Aeronautics and Space Administration Goddard Space Flight Center

NASA's Solar Terrestrial Probe Program

Sun 101 | National Geographic

The sun keeps the planets in its orbit with a tremendous gravitational force. What would happen if it disappeared entirely? Learn about the star at the center of our solar system, and how it is critical to all life as we know it. : ? Subscribe About National Geographic: National Geographic is the world's premium destination for science, exploration, and adventure. Through their world-class scientists, photographers, journalists, and filmmakers, Nat Geo gets you closer to the stories that matter and past the edge of what's possible. Get More National Geographic: Official Site: Facebook: Twitter: Instagram: Sun 101 | National Geographic National Geographic

5 Years Of Sun: Our Starís Best Close-Ups | Video

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory acquired 200 million+ images in its past 1,826 days looking at the Sun. Goddard Space Flight Center pulled together these highlights for pure visual enjoyment in addition to cool science. Full Story:

The Sun: Crash Course Astronomy #10

Phil takes us for a closer (eye safe!) look at the two-octillion ton star that rules our solar system. We look at the sun's core, plasma, magnetic fields, sunspots, solar flares, coronal mass ejections, and what all of that means for our planet. This episode is sponsored by Squarespace:

NASA Science Live: New Discoveries from Our Mission to Touch the Sun

What mysteries about our star is NASAís Parker Solar Probe mission uncovering as it journeys closer to the Sun than any human-made object ever before? Watch this episode of #NASAScience? Live as experts discuss some of the first discoveries made by the spacecraft. License Creative Commons Attribution license (reuse allowed)

The Closest Images of the Sun Ever Taken (as of July 20, 2020)

Get MagellanTV here: and get an exclusive offer for our viewers: an extended, month-long trial, FREE. MagellanTV has the largest and best collection of Science content anywhere, including Space, Physics, Technology, Nature, Mind and Body, and a growing collection of 4K. This new streaming service has 3,000+ great documentaries. Check out our personal recommendation and MagellanTVís exclusive playlists: The closest images of the Sun ever were taken by ESA's Solar Orbiter. It reveals new features on the Sun never seen before, including what appear to be small flares dubbed "campfires". It's possible these campfires on the Sun may be the long-sought after "micro flares" or "nanoflares" that are theorized to heat the Sun's corona to millions of degress. ?? Subscribe for more: ?? Share this video with a fellow space traveler: ?? Watch my most recent upload: ?? Help me improve the channel by joining the community on Patreon ?? Check out Launch Pad merchandise! Disclaimer: Some of these links go to one of my websites and some are affiliate links where I'll earn a small commission if you make a purchase at no additional cost to you. ? Let's connect: For business inquiries - chris AT christianready DOT com Twitter - @launchpadastro Instagram - @launchpadastro - Facebook Discord - ?? c/o Christian Ready P.O. Box 66 Westminster, MD 21158 United States Earth

Click here to return to top of page

NASA | Highlights from SOHO's 20 Years in Space

The Solar Heliospheric Observatory at 20

Solar cycle #23 as seen via SOHO, and an artistís conception of the observatory in space.
All images credit of NASA/ESA/SOHO

Published on Dec 1, 2015 Dr. Joe Gurman of NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center provides commentary on selected shots from SOHO's 20 years in space.
After 20 years in space, ESA and NASAís Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, or SOHO, is still going strong. Originally launched in 1995
to study the sun and its influence out to the very edges of the solar system, SOHO revolutionized this field of science, known as heliophysics,
providing the basis for nearly 5,000 scientific papers. SOHO also found an unexpected role as the greatest comet hunter of all
timeóreaching 3,000 comet discoveries in September 2015.
When SOHO was launched on Dec. 2, 1995, the field of heliophysics looked very different than it does today.
Questions about the interior of the sun, the origin of the constant outflow of material from the sun known as the solar wind,
and the mysterious heating of the solar atmosphere were still unanswered. Twenty years later, not only do we have a much better
idea about what powers the sun, but our entire understanding of how the sun behaves has changed.
This video is public domain and can be downloaded Like our videos? Subscribe to NASA's Goddard Shorts HD podcast: Or find NASA Goddard Space Flight Center on Facebook Or find us on Twitter Category Science & Technology License Standard YouTube License

NASA/ESA SOHO - Launch, December 2, 1995

Uploaded on Dec 2, 2011 Happy 16th SOHO! Launched December 2, 1995, SOHO has been giving us a 24/7 eye on the Sun for about 1 1/2 solar activity cycles.
It has allowed us to see the Sun as it has never been seen before. Though some of the instruments have now been replaced by SDO many
of its 12 instruments are still in operation, especially the LASCO C2 and C3 coronagraphs which are still vital in our daily monitoring of the Sun. Credit: NASA / ESA SOHO Category Science & Technology License Standard YouTube License

SOHO Solar Images From Oct. 2003.

Published on May 14, 2013 This is a collection of images taken by the instruments on-board the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory' (SOHO)
of solar flare associated with the Halloween Storm of 2003. It starts with is a zoomed in view of the flare then shifts
to a full solar disk view. This is followed by the LASCO C2 coronograph view and then the LASCO C3 coronograph view.
The coronographic view end when the CCD sensors are overwhelm by the ejected solar particles.
This is the largest solar flare of the space age to date.
Category Science & Technology License Standard YouTube License

A massive sunspot witnessed by SOHO in 2000, compared to the Earth.

A Ďneatí imageÖ Comet NEAT photobombs the view of SOHOís LASCO C3 camera.

SDO: Year 6 Ultra-HD.

Published on Feb 12, 2016 The sun is always changing and NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory is always watching. Launched on Feb. 11, 2010,
SDO keeps a 24-hour eye on the entire disk of the sun, with a prime view of the graceful dance of solar material
coursing through the sun's atmosphere, the corona. SDO's sixth year in orbit was no exception.
This video shows that entire sixth year -- from Jan. 1, 2015, to Jan. 28, 2016, as one time-lapse sequence.
At full quality on YouTube, this video is ultra-high definition 3840x2160 and 29.97 frames per second. Each frame represents 2 hours.
A downloadable version has a frame rate of 59.94 with each frame representing 1 hour. See below for the link.
SDO's Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) captures a shot of the sun every 12 seconds in 10 different wavelengths.
The images shown here are based on a wavelength of 171 angstroms, which is in the extreme ultraviolet range and
shows solar material at around 600,000 kelvins (about 1,079,540 degrees F). In this wavelength it is easy to see the sun's 25-day rotation.
During the course of the video, the sun subtly increases and decreases in apparent size. This is because the distance between the
SDO spacecraft and the sun varies over time. The image is, however, remarkably consistent and stable despite the fact that SDO
orbits Earth at 6,876 mph, and Earth orbits the sun at 67,062 mph.
Scientists study these images to better understand the complex electromagnetic system causing the constant movement on the sun,
which can ultimately have an effect closer to Earth, too: Flares and another type of solar explosion called coronal mass ejections
can sometimes disrupt technology in space. Moreover, studying our closest star is one way of learning about other stars in the galaxy.
NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, built, operates and manages the SDO spacecraft for NASA's Science
Mission Directorate in Washington, D.C. Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center/Wiessinger Music: "Tides," a track available from Killer Tracks Learn more about SDO and see more imagery: and This video is public domain. It can be downloaded at its full quality and frame rate at: Category Science & Technology License Standard YouTube License

Seeing Double: NASA Missions Measure Solar Flare from 2 Spots in Space.

During a December 2013 solar flare, three NASA missions observed a current sheet form Ė a strong clue for explaining what initiates the flares.
This animation shows four views of the flare from NASAís Solar Dynamics Observatory, NASAís Solar and Terrestrial Relations Observatory,
and JAXA/NASAís Hinode, allowing scientists to make unprecedented measurements of its characteristics.
The current sheet is a long, thin structure, especially visible in the views on the left.
Those two animations depict light emitted by material with higher temperatures, so they better show the extremely hot current sheet.
Credits: NASA/JAXA/SDO/STEREO/Hinode (courtesy Zhu, et al.) These eruptions on the sun eject radiation in all directions.

NASA's SDO Captures Images of a Mid-Level Solar Flare

NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory captured this imagery of a solar flare Ė as seen in the bright flash Ė
around 8:30 p.m. EDT on April 17, 2016. A loop of solar material can also be seen rising up off the right limb of the sun.
Credits: NASA/SDO/Goddard

It's Spaceweather!!


Click here to return to top of page

The Parker Mission.

Image: Payload accommodation onboard Solar Orbiter. In this rendering, one side wall has been removed to expose the remote-sensing instruments mounted on the payload panel. The SPICE [Spectral Imaging of the Coronal Environment} instrument (not visible) is mounted to the top panel from below. Credit: ESA. What Solar Orbiter brings to the mix is an orbit that will allow us to get close-up views of the Sunís polar regions, with images from latitudes higher than 25 degrees. We should be able to see solar storms building up over an extended period from the same vantage point, because when traveling at the highest velocity along its orbit, Solar Orbiter will come close to matching the speed of the Sunís rotation on its axis. We will be able to track solar storms for days. Remember that many of the Sunís jets originate in the areas around the poles, meaning we need more data about the magnetic field and plasma flows there to delve more fully into the process. These are not regions that are visible to us from Earth.

ESA's Solar Orbiter will capture the very first images of the Sunís polar regions, where magnetic tension builds up and releases in a lively dance. Credits: Spacecraft: ESA/ATG medialab; Sun: NASA/SDO/P. Testa (CfA)

Flying Into the Sun? NASA's Parker Solar Probe Mission

Published on Jun 13, 2017 NASA is planning a mission to get as close as possible as we can to the Sun and reveal its mysteries. Support us at: More stories at: Follow us on Twitter: @universetoday Like us on Facebook: Google+ - Instagram - Team: Fraser Cain - @fcain / Karla Thompson - @karlaii Chad Weber - If youíve watched enough of our videos, you know Iíve got an uneasy alliance with the Sun. Sure, it provides the energy we need for all life on Earth. But, itís a great big ongoing thermonuclear reaction, and itís right there! As soon as we get fusion, Sun, in like, 30 years or so, I tell you, weíll be the ones laughing.

Parker Solar Probeís trajectory including Venus flybys. Credit: NASA/JHUAPL

Hereís the First Image of the Sun from the Parker Solar Probe

The Parker Solar Probeís WISPR (Wide-field Imager for Solar Probe) instrument captured this image of a coronal streamer on Nov. 8th, 2018. Coronal streamers are structures of solar material within the Sunís atmosphere, the corona, that usually overlie regions of increased solar activity. The fine structure of the streamer is very clear, with at least two rays visible. The bright object near the center of the image is Mercury, and the dark spots are a result of background correction. Credits: NASA/Naval Research Laboratory/Parker Solar Probe

NASA's Parker Solar Probe has sent back a remarkable image.

via Gfycat

This was a FIRST! - Unprecedented view of Sun AND something else

My Official Website: DONATE TO ME DIRECTLY-PayPal (Safe & secure one time user friendly method) PayPal Thank you for watching! Please LIKE & SHARE ?? **Donít forget to click the subscribe button to my channel for updates** NEW VISITORS CAN SUBSCRIBE TO MY CHANNEL CLICK LINK BELOW YouTube: (Subscribe for daily updates and live streams ) NEW~ MrMBB333 Merchandise Follow me on these social platforms: * Like Me On Facebook: :* Follow Me On Twitter * Google+: * Follow Me On Instagram: SEND ME A EMAIL: ~Want to share something with me? Please send me an email at #MrMBB333 CHANNEL POLICY: Inappropriate content or language will be removed from comments at the discretion of the moderators. Any users that abuse this policy will be blocked.

The Ars Technica article on the Parker Mission

Coronal holes are regions in the sunís atmosphere or corona where solar plasma can stream directly into space. Often a hole will a couple rotations, inciting repeat auroras approximately every 4 weeks. Credit: NASA

Parker Solar Probeís instruments. Credit: NASA/JHUAPL

The Parker Solar Probe orbiting the Sun.(Artist conception) Credit: NASA/JHUAPL


NASAís Parker Solar Probe will launch this summer(2018) and study both the solar wind and unanswered questions about the Sunís sizzling corona. Credit:

The Parker Solar Probe will use seven Venus flybys over nearly seven years to gradually shrink its orbit around the Sun, coming as close as 3.7 million miles (5.9 million km), well within the orbit of Mercury. Closest approaches (called perihelia) will happen in late December 2024 and the first half of 2025 before the mission ends. Credit:

During the probeís closest approach, the Sunís apparent diameter will span 14į of sky. Compare that to the Ĺį Sun we see from Earth. Can you imagine how hot the Sunís rays would be if it were this large from Earth? Life as we know it would be over. Credit: Wikipedia / CC BY-SA 3.0

NASAís Parker Solar Probe will be the first-ever mission to "touch" the sun. The spacecraft, about the size of a small car, will travel directly into the sun's atmosphere about 4 million miles from our star's surface. Launch is slated for summer 2018. Credit: The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory This video is public domain. Learn more about the Parker Solar Probe:

This video is public domain and along with other supporting visualizations can be downloaded from the Scientific Visualization Studio at: If you liked this video, subscribe to the NASA Goddard YouTube channel: Or subscribe to NASAís Goddard Shorts HD Podcast: Follow NASAís Goddard Space Flight Center ∑ Facebook:Twitter FlickrInstagramGoogle+ Category Science & Technology License Standard YouTube License

Illustration of the Parker Solar Probe spacecraft approaching the Sun. Credits: Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

Artistís impression of a solar flare erupting from the Sunís surface. Credit: NASA Goddard Space Flight Center

Solar Probe Plus will move in a highly elliptical orbit, using seven gravity assists from Venus to move it closer to the Sun with each pass. Solar Orbiter will use Earth and Venus gravity assists to move into a relatively circular orbit and climb up and out of the ecliptic plane to capture the first images of the Sunís poles. Credit: NASAís Goddard Space Flight Centerís Scientific Visualization Studio Visualization Credits Tom Bridgman (GST): Lead Animator Scott Wiessinger (USRA): Producer This video is public domain and may be downloaded at: Category Science & Technology

Parker Probe, Sphere Nova, Snow Records | S0 News Dec.5.2019

Need to Catch Up? COSMIC DISASTER: CLIMATE FORCING: CLIMATE FORCING [Short]: PLASMA COSMOLOGY: PLASMA COSMOLOGY [Short]: Lots more on our channel page, just click our name! Our Websites: Suspicious Observers Space Weather News Quake Watch Observatory Project Magnetic Reversal

Click here to return to top of page


Space Missions are Building Up a Detailed Map of the Sunís Magnetic Field

Solar physicists have been having a field day of late. A variety of missions have been staring at the sun more intently ever before (please donít try it at home). From the Parker Solar Probe to the Solar Orbiter, we are constantly collecting more and more data about our stellar neighbor. But itís not just the big name missions that can collect useful data Ė sometimes information from missions as simple as a sounding rocket make all the difference.

Graphic showing the different layers of the sun, including the chromosphere. Credit: NASAís Goddard Space Flight Center

Image of the chromosphere that was taken during a total eclipse in 1999. Credit: Luc Viatour

Flying Into the Sun? NASA's Parker Solar Probe Mission

NASA is planning a mission to get as close as possible as we can to the Sun and reveal its mysteries. : Universetoday's youtube channel Sign up to my weekly email newsletter: Support us at:Support us at: Follow us on Tumblr: More stories at Follow us on Twitter: @universetoday Like us on Facebook: Instagram -

Click here to Jump to Universe Today's associated Pages

Click here to return to top of page

Future Missions to the SUN


Future Missions to the SUN: FROM ESA.

The ESAís Solar Orbiter, a Mission That Will Chart the Unexplored Polar Regions of the Sun, Just Launched!

Bella Browny ē 8 hours ago European Space Agency plans to launch a solar orbiter in 2017 that will
come as close as 26 million miles to the sun. #space #sun

In the coming years, a number of will be sent to space for the purpose of answering some of the enduring questions about the cosmos. One of the most pressing is the effect that solar activity and ďspace weatherĒ events have on planet Earth. By being able to better-predict these, scientists will be able to create better early-warning systems that could prevent damage to Earthís electrical infrastructure.

Solar Orbiter liftoff

ESAís new Sun-exploring mission Solar Orbiter lofted to space aboard the US Atlas V 411 rocket from NASAís spaceport in Cape Canaveral, Florida at 04:03 GMT (05:03 CET) on 10 February 2020. Solar Orbiter, an ESA-led mission with strong NASA participation, carries a set of ten instruments for imaging the surface of the Sun and studying the environment in its vicinity. The spacecraft will travel around the Sun on an elliptical orbit that will take it as close as 42 million km away from the Sunís surface, about a quarter of the distance between the Sun and Earth. The orbit will allow Solar Orbiter to see some of the never-before-imaged regions of the Sun, including the poles, and shed new light on what gives rise to solar wind, which can affect infrastructure on Earth. More about Solar Orbiter:"> ? Subscribe:"> and click twice on the bell button to receive our notifications. ? Subscribe:and click twice on the bell button to receive our notifications. Check out our full video catalog: Follow us on Twitter: On Facebook: On Instagram: On Flickr: We are Europe's gateway to space. Our mission is to shape the development of Europe's space capability and ensure that investment in space continues to deliver benefits to the citizens of Europe and the world. Check out to get up to speed on everything space related. Copyright information about our videos is available here:

This includes the Heliospheric Imager (SoloHi), Spectral Imaging of the Coronal Environment (SPICE), and the Polarithmic and Helioseismic Imager (PHI), which will image the Sunís surface and corona. Meanwhile, instruments like the Energetic Particle Detector (EPD), Solar Wind plasma Analyser (SWA), X-ray Spectrometer/Telescope (STIX), and Extreme Ultraviolet Imager (EUI) will measure solar wind and the Sunís magnetic field

The Solar Orbiter lifting off from Cape Canaveral. Credit: ESAĖS. Corvaja

Artistís impression of the Solar Orbiter facing the Sun. Credit: ESA/ATG medialab/NASA/SDO/P. Testa (CfA)

Click here to return to top of page

For the first time ever, a spacecraft has flown through the Sunís outer atmosphere. The Parker Solar Probe passed through the out portion of the Sunís corona in April of 2021, passing directly through streamers of solar plasma.

Parker Solar Probe Encounters Streamers on the Way to the Sun

As Parker Solar Probe passed through the Sun's corona in early 2021, the spacecraft flew by structures called coronal streamers. These structures can be seen as bright features moving upward and downward in this video compiled from the spacecraft's WISPR (Wide-field Imager for Parker Solar Probe) instrument. Such a view is only possible because the spacecraft flew above and below the streamers inside the corona. Until now, streamers have only been seen from afar. They are visible from Earth during total solar eclipses. Credit: NASA/Johns Hopkins APL/Naval Research Laboratory

NASA's Parker Solar Probe Touches The Sun For The First Time

For the first time in history, a spacecraft has touched the Sun. NASAís Parker Solar Probe has now flown through the Sunís upper atmosphere Ė the corona Ė and sampled particles and magnetic fields there. The new milestone marks one major step for Parker Solar Probe and one giant leap for solar science. Just as landing on the Moon allowed scientists to understand how it was formed, touching the very stuff the Sun is made of will help scientists uncover critical information about our closest star and its influence on the solar system. More information:from NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center Credit: NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center cientists: Nour Raouafi (Johns Hopkins University/APL) Justin Kasper (University of Michigan) Stuart Bale (University of California, Berkeley) Kelly Korreck (Johns Hopkins University/APL) Adam Szabo (NASA/GSFC) Producer: Joy Ng (KBRwyle) Writer: Mara Johnson-Groh (Wyle Information Systems) Data Visualizer: Tom Bridgman (GST) Animators: Jonathan North (KBRwyle) Ben Smith (Johns Hopkins APL) This video can be freely shared and downloaded at While the video in its entirety can be shared without permission, the music and some individual imagery may have been obtained through permission and may not be excised or remixed in other products. Specific details on such imagery may be found here: For more information on NASAís media guidelines, visit If you liked this video, subscribe to the NASA Goddard YouTube channel: subscribe to the NASA Goddard YouTube channel: Follow NASAís Goddard Space Flight Center ∑ Instagram ∑ Twitter- NASA GODDARD ∑ Twitter-NASA GODDARD PICS ∑ Facebook: ∑ Flickr

Click here to Jump to Universetoday's assocated pages

Click here to return to top of page

Misc Articles

Check out the first-ever map of the solar coronaís magnetic field

NASA Missions Make Unprecedented Map of Sunís Magnetic Field

Information on NASA Missions Make Unprecedented Map of Sunís Magnetic Field

Sounding Rocket CLASP2 Elucidates Solar Magnetic Field

Information on Sounding Rocket CLASP2 Elucidates Solar Magnetic Field

Check out the first-ever map of the solar coronaís magnetic field

Information on Check out the first-ever map of the solar coronaís magnetic field

Articles on the sun

Pages from Universetoday

Space Missions are Building Up a Detailed Map of the Sunís Magnetic Field


Universe Today's Researchers Discover the Source of the Sunís Most Dangerous High-Energy Particles

Universe Today's TAG: CLASP2

Universe Today's TAG: HINODE

Universe Today's TAG: IRIS


Universe Today's TAG: SUN

Parker Solar Probe Captured Images of Venus on its way to the Sun

Sun-Like Star Shows Magnetic Field Was Key For Early Life On Earth

Click here to return to Space Missions are Building Up a Detailed Map of the Sunís Magnetic Field subsection

Click here to return to top of page

Parker Solar Probe Flies Through the Sunís Outer Atmosphere for the First Time



Universe Today's CATEGORY: SUN

Universe Today's TAG: CORONA


Universe Today's TAG: SOLAR WIND

Universe Today's TAG: SUN

Click here to return to top of page

Click here to return to The Parker Solar Probe's first solar coronasphere sample subsection