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In the News – Year 2015

12.04.15 – SDO Sees Flourishing Magnetic Loops
A bright set of loops near the edge of the sun's face grew and shifted quickly after the magnetic field was disrupted by a small eruption on Nov. 25, 2015.

12.01.15 – SOHO Celebrates 20 Years of Space-based Science
After 20 years in space, ESA and NASA's Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, or SOHO, is still going strong.

12.01.15 – A Look Back at NASA Solar Missions
Twenty years ago, the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory, a cooperative effort between NASA and the European Space Agency, launched into space and revolutionized our study of the sun and a scientific discipline called heliophysics — the study of how the sun's influence spreads out in all directions, able to dramatically affect the space environment near Earth and throughout the solar system.

11.25.15 – SDO Sees a Dark Filament Circle
A dark, almost circular filament broke away from the sun in a gauzy, feathery swirl, on Nov. 15, 2015, in this video from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory.

11.18.15 – SDO Sees Brightening Magnetic Loops
Two active regions sprouted arches of bundled magnetic loops in this video from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory taken on Nov. 11-12, 2015.

11.10.15 – NASA's Beach Ball Coronagraph
What's better at blocking sunlight: a traditional flat occulter disk or a beach ball?

11.09.15 – SDO Sees Active Region Outbursts
This close-up video by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory shows an active region near the right-hand edge of the sun's disk, which erupted with at least a dozen minor events over a 30-hour period from Nov. 3-5, 2015.

11.03.15 – NASA Observes Auroras Across Canada
The dancing lights in the image above are the aurora borealis or Northern Lights. These auroras are at their most dynamic during geomagnetic storms—often the result of solar storms called coronal mass ejections, or CMEs, that originate from the sun.

11.02.15 – SDO Sees Active Solar Regions Blossoming
A pair of active regions began to rotate into the view of NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory on Oct. 27, 2015.

10.26.15 – SDO Sees Very Long Filament
This past week the sun featured a long dark line, known as a filament, which stretched at least halfway across its face as seen in the top half of this image from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, captured on Oct. 21, 2015.

10.16.15 – Hefty Prominence Eruption Observed by SDO
A mass of solar material gathered itself into a twisting mass, spun around for a bit, then rose up and broke apart over a 10-hour period on Oct. 13, 2015.

10.14.15 – Coronal Hole Front and Center
The dark area across the top of the sun in this image is a coronal hole, a region on the sun where the magnetic field is open to interplanetary space, sending coronal material speeding out in what is called a high-speed solar wind stream.

10.09.15 – Fast Solar Wind Causes Aurora Light Shows
On the night of Oct. 8, 2015, a photographer in Harstad, Norway captured this image of the dancing northern lights.

10.07.15 – NASA Measuring the Pulsating Aurora
Thanks to a lucky conjunction of two satellites, a ground-based array of all-sky cameras, and some spectacular aurora borealis, researchers have uncovered evidence for an unexpected role that electrons have in creating the dancing auroras.

10.02.15 – NASA's SDO Sees Sun Emit Mid-Level Flare Oct. 1
The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 8:13 p.m. EDT on Oct. 1, 2015.

09.29.15 – SDO Views Active Region Loops
An active region viewed in profile put on quite a show of erupting plasma and looping arches on Sept. 22-23, 2015.

09.28.15 – NASA's SDO Captures Image of Mid-Class Solar Flare
The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 10:58 a.m. EDT on Sept. 28, 2015. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

09.23.15 – NASA's BARREL Team Returns from Sweden
After seven balloon launches in the bright Arctic sun, the BARREL team has returned home from a 4-week campaign in Kiruna, Sweden, north of the Arctic Circle.

09.16.15 – SDO Sees 3 Coronal ‘Holes’
The sun was visually dominated by three substantial coronal holes that rotated across its face the week of Sept. 8-10, 2015.

09.14.15 – NASA's SDO Catches a Double Photobomb
On Sept. 13, 2015, as NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, kept up its constant watch on the sun, its view was photobombed not once, but twice.

08.24.15 – NASA SDO: Images of a Mid-Level Solar Flare
NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

08.11.15 – BARREL Team Arrives in Sweden for Balloon Mini-Campaign
In early August, scientists from the NASA-funded Balloon Array for Radiation belt Relativistic Electron Losses, or BARREL, mission arrived in northern Sweden for a third data collection campaign.

07.30.15 – Nearing 3000 Comets: SOHO Solar Observatory Greatest Comet Hunter of All Time
In 1995, a new solar observatory was launched. A joint project of ESA and NASA, the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory – SOHO – has been sending home images of our dynamic sun ever since.

07.09.15 – Scientists Study Atmosphere of Venus through Transit Images
Two of NASA's heliophysics missions can now claim planetary science on their list of scientific findings. A group of scientists used the Venus transit - a very rare event where a planet passes between Earth and the sun, appearing to us as a dark dot steadily making its way across the sun's bright face - to make measurements of how the Venusian atmosphere absorbs different kinds of light.

06.25.15 – SDO Sees Mid-level Solar Flare
The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 4:16 a.m. EDT on June 25, 2015. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

06.22.15 – Sun Unleashes Mid-level Flare
The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 2:23 p.m. EDT on June 22, 2015. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

05.22.15 – Coronal Loops Over a Sunspot Group
The Atmospheric Imaging Assembly (AIA) instrument aboard NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) images the solar atmosphere in multiple wavelengths to link changes in the surface to interior changes.

05.19.15 – Using a Sounding Rocket to Help Calibrate NASA's SDO
The flight of a two-stage Terrier-Black Brant (Black Brant IX) suborbital sounding rocket was terminated May 21 by safety officials at the White Sands Missile Range in New Mexico about four seconds into the second stage burn after data showed the vehicle was flying off-course.

05.12.15 – DHS/NASA Space Weather Twitter Chat
When solar storms release solar flares and coronal mass ejections, or CMEs, toward Earth, we can feel the effects here on the ground.

05.06.15 – NASA's SDO Observes ‘Cinco de Mayo’ Solar Flare
The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 6:11 p.m. EDT on May 5, 2015. NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

04.28.15 – Strong Evidence For Coronal Heating Theory Presented at 2015 TESS Meeting
The sun's surface is blisteringly hot at 10,340 degrees Fahrenheit — but its atmosphere is another 300 times hotter.

04.28.15 – EUNIS' View of the Sun
NASA's EUNIS sounding rocket examined light from the sun in the area shown by the white line (imposed over an image of the sun from NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory) then separated the light into various wavelengths (as shown in the lined images – spectra – on the right and left) to identify the temperature of material observed on the sun.

04.21.15 – SDO Shows Active Regions Across Front of Sun
This solar image taken April 20, 2015, by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, shows a complicated pattern of bright regions and soaring loops stretching across the front of the sun.

04.09.15 – NASA Study Finds Small Solar Eruptions Can Have Profound Effects On Unprotected Planets
While no one yet knows what's needed to build a habitable planet, it's clear that the interplay between the sun and Earth is crucial for making our planet livable – a balance between a sun that provides energy and a planet that can protect itself from the harshest solar emissions.

04.08.15 – NASA Gives Green Light for Johns Hopkins APL to Begin Building Solar Probe Plus Spacecraft
NASA's Solar Probe Plus mission — which will fly closer to the sun than any spacecraft has before — reached a major milestone last month when it successfully completed its Critical Design Review, or CDR.

04.08.15 – Seasonal, Year-Long Cycles Seen on the Sun
Our sun is constantly changing. It goes through cycles of activity – swinging between times of relative calm and times when frequent explosions on its surface can fling light, particles and energy out into space.

03.24.15 – NASA Funded Mission Studies the Sun in Soft X-Rays
At any given moment, our sun emits a range of light waves far more expansive than what our eyes alone can see: from visible light to extreme ultraviolet to soft and hard X-rays.

03.17.15 – NASA's SDO Sees Two Coronal Holes
NASA's SDO captured an image on March 16, which shows two dark patches, known as coronal holes — one of the largest polar holes seen in decades.

03.11.15 – Sun Emits Significant Solar Flare
The sun release an X-class solar flare, an X2.2, peaking at 12:22 p.m. EDT on March 11, 2015. NASA's SDO, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

03.10.15 – SDO Captures Images Of Mid-Level Solar Flares
Solar active region AR2297 is rife with mid-level flares. Two more mid-level flares, an M5.8-class and an M5.1-class, have been observed.

02.11.15 – New Videos Highlight NASA SDO's Fifth Anniversary
In honor of SDO's fifth anniversary, on Feb. 11, 2015, NASA has released two videos showcasing highlights from the last five years of sun watching.

02.10.15 – NASA's SDO Sees Giant Filament on the Sun
A dark line snaked across the lower half of the sun, on Feb.10, 2015, as seen by NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory.

01.22.15 – SOHO and Hinode Offer New Insight Into Solar Eruptions
A journal paper in Nature magazine on Oct. 23, 2014, used data from NASA missions to describe what triggers a Coronal Mass Ejection.

01.13.15 – First Notable Solar Flare of 2015
The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 11:24 p.m. EST on Jan. 12, 2015.