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]

jul 262012
Distant Planetary System is Just as 'Neat' as Ours

  Researchers measure the orientation of a multiplanet system and find it very similar to our own Solar System. In this artist interpretation, the planet Kepler-30c is transiting one of the large starspots that frequently appear on the surface of its host star. The authors used these spot-crossing events to show that the orbits of [continue reading]

jul 092012
Researchers Create “MRI” of the Sun’s Interior

  A team of scientists has created an “MRI” of the Sun’s interior plasma motions, shedding light on how it transfers heat from its deep interior to its surface. The result, which appears in the journal the Proceedings of the National Academy of Sciences, increases our understanding of how heat is transported outwards by the Sun [continue reading]

jul 032012
Clues to Solar Storms

  Doppler measurements that help track storms on Earth may also be useful for understanding storms on the sun. Left, image of hot (1.8-million degree Fahrenheit) active region loops. Right, flows of solar plasma (blue shifts). Credit: SDO/AIA (NASA and Hinode/EIS (JAXA, NASA, ESA and STFC) A Rice University astrophysicist is part of an international [continue reading]