mrt 102013
 
The Source of the Solar Wind Energy Discovered

  Using data from an aging NASA spacecraft, researchers have found signs of an energy source in the solar wind that has caught the attention of fusion researchers. NASA will be able to test the theory later this decade when it sends a new probe into the Sun for a closer look. The solar wind [continue reading]

feb 202013
 
A Cool Discovery About a Nearby Sun-Like Star

  ESA’s Herschel space observatory has detected a cool layer in the atmosphere of Alpha Centauri A, the first time this has been seen in a star beyond our own Sun. The finding is not only important for understanding the Sun’s activity, but could also help in the quest to discover protoplanetary systems around other [continue reading]

feb 042013
 
Research Brings Light to Star Mystery

  Scientists at Northumbria University have begun to unlock the mystery of why the outer edge of the Sun is much hotter than its surface for the first time.  Magnetic loop structures in the corona of the Sun. A team led by Northumbria’s Dr Richard Morton, and including researchers from the University of Sheffield and [continue reading]

jan 272013
 
A Big Piece to the Solar Corona Puzzle Solved

  The Sun’s visible surface, or photosphere, is 10,000 degrees Fahrenheit. As you move outward from it, you pass through a tenuous layer of hot, ionized gas or plasma called the corona. The corona is familiar to anyone who has seen a total solar eclipse, since it glimmers ghostly white around the hidden Sun. This [continue reading]

sep 222012
 
Peering Into Coronal Prominence Cavities

  The Sun’s atmosphere dances. Giant columns of solar material – made of gas so hot that many of the electrons have been scorched off the atoms, turning it into a form of magnetized matter we call plasma – leap off the Sun’s surface, jumping and twisting. Sometimes these prominences of solar material, shoot off, [continue reading]

jul 032012
 
Magnetic Fields on the Sun will be Studied by SUMI

  On July 5, NASA will launch a mission called the Solar Ultraviolet Magnetograph Investigation or SUMI, to study the intricate, constantly changing magnetic fields on the Sun in a hard-to-observe area of the Sun’s low atmosphere called the chromosphere. SUMI’s instruments are designed to study magnetic fields of the sun’s chromosphere — a thin [continue reading]