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Last updated on April 17, 2014 at 17:30 EDT

Latest Solar Dynamics Observatory Stories

Scientists Study Coronal Loops To Gain Insight Into Solar Dynamics
2013-07-02 18:21:44

John P. Mills, Ph.D. for redOrbit.com -- Your Universe Online Solar flares and the even more violent Coronal Mass Ejections (CMEs) are spectacular events, driving enormous amounts of energy and streams of charged particles into space. While researchers have had the opportunity to study these events for decades, we are still learning about what initiates these explosions. Previous studies have revealed that twisted magnetic field lines within the solar structure will pierce the surface...

NASA IRIS Launch Successful
2013-06-27 18:15:59

[ Watch the Video: IRIS Launch ] Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com – Your Universe Online NASA successfully launched its new Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) aboard an Orbital Sciences Pegasus XL rocket at approximately 7:27 pm (PST) tonight. IRIS and the Pegasus rocket were both flown aboard Orbital's Stargazer L-1011 commercial transport aircraft, which has been modified to serve as the launch platform. This launch design helps to keep the cost low for smaller missions,...

2013-06-17 12:21:44

PALO ALTO, Calif., June 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- The Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) spacecraft is on track for a launch from Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on June 26. IRIS will fill a crucial gap in the ability of scientists to advance Sun-Earth connection studies by tracing the flow of energy and plasma through a dynamic interface region - the chromosphere and transition region - between the solar surface and the solar corona. "The entire IRIS team is...

2013-06-10 12:21:03

PALO ALTO, Calif., June 10, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- On December 15-16, 2011, a Sun-grazing comet, designated Lovejoy (C/2011 W3), passed deep within the hot solar atmosphere - the corona - effectively probing a region that could never be visited by spacecraft because of the intense heat radiating from the nearby solar surface. In a paper published today in the journal Science, researchers from several institutions - including the Solar & Astrophysics Lab at the Lockheed Martin (NYSE: LMT)...

Comet Lovejoy Provides Rare Data
2013-06-07 14:36:43

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online The intrepid comet Lovejoy flew right into the Sun's violent atmosphere and lived to tell scientists the story and help them understand more about our local star. In December 2011, comet Lovejoy plowed into the Sun's atmosphere, withstanding temperatures that would have obliterated any man-made object. Telescope images taken of the comet's miraculous feat showed how the comet's tail was pulled about by an intense magnetic field. This...

SDO Captures 3 Years Of Sun Activity In Spectacular Video
2013-04-22 19:09:25

Lee Rannals for redOrbit.com — Your Universe Online NASA has released a video of the unbroken coverage of the sun for the past three years, taken by its Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO). The spacecraft's Atmospheric Imaging Assembly snaps a shot of the sun every twelve seconds in ten different wavelengths. The latest video shows the past three years of the sun at a pace of two images per day. [ Watch the Video: Three Years With Solar Dynamics Observatory ] The video,...

Late May Launch Planned For NASA's IRIS Sun-Observing Satellite, Now At Vandenberg AFB
2013-04-18 06:40:43

Lawrence LeBlond for redOrbit.com - Your Universe Online NASA´s next satellite to go into space has just arrived (April 16) at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California. The Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) spacecraft, which will launch no earlier than May 28, will be part of the agency's Small Explorer (SMEX) Mission, developed to deliver space exploration missions under $120 million. IRIS was designed and built at Lockheed Martin´s Space Systems Company Advanced...

2013-04-17 16:20:18

GREENBELT, Md., April 17, 2013 /PRNewswire-USNewswire/ -- NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) satellite arrived at Vandenberg Air Force Base in California on Tuesday, April 16, to begin its final preparations for launch currently scheduled no earlier than May 28. IRIS will improve our understanding of how heat and energy move through the deepest levels of the sun's atmosphere, thereby increasing our ability to forecast space weather. (Logo:...

2013-04-17 12:21:07

PALO ALTO, Calif., April 17, 2013 /PRNewswire/ -- Scientists will soon gain a better view into energy and plasma movement near the surface of the sun, thanks to delivery of the Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS) spacecraft to Vandenberg Air Force Base, Calif. in preparation for launch. Part of NASA's Small Explorer (SMEX) Mission, which delivers space exploration missions costing less than $120 million, IRIS was designed and built at Lockheed Martin's [NYSE: LMT] Space Systems...

Earth, Lunar Transits Observed On Same Day By NASA’s SDO
2013-03-12 10:01:36

NASA On March 2, 2013, NASA´s Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) entered its semiannual eclipse season, a period of three weeks when Earth blocks its view of the sun for a period of time each day. On March 11, however, SDO was treated to two transits. Earth blocked SDO´s view of the sun from about 2:15 to 3:45 a.m. EDT. Later in the same day, from around 7:30 to 8:45 a.m. EDT, the moon moved in front of the sun for a partial eclipse. When Earth blocks the sun, the boundaries of...