NASA Logo, National Aeronautics and Space Administration

In the News – Year 2017

11.27.17 – All Missions On Board for NASA Heliophysics Research
Scientists have been studying the near-Earth environment for the better part of a century, but many mysteries – like where the energetic particles that pervade the area originate and become energized – still remain.

11.16.17 – NASA Detects Solar Flare Pulses at Sun and Earth
When our Sun erupts with giant explosions – such as bursts of radiation called solar flares – we know they can affect space throughout the solar system as well as near Earth.

11.15.17 – FIREBIRD II and NASA Mission Locate Whistling Space Electrons’ Origins
Scientists have long known that solar-energized particles trapped around the planet are sometimes scattered into Earth’s upper atmosphere where they can contribute to beautiful auroral displays.

11.08.17 – Parker Solar Probe Comes to NASA Goddard for Testing
On Monday, Nov. 6, 2017, NASA's Parker Solar Probe spacecraft arrived at NASA’s Goddard Space Flight Center in Greenbelt, Maryland, for environmental tests.

11.02.17 – Atmospheric Beacons Guide NASA Scientists in Search for Life
Some exoplanets shine brighter than others in the search for life beyond the solar system. New NASA research proposes a novel approach to sniffing out exoplanet atmospheres.

10.27.17 – September 2017’s Intense Solar Activity Viewed From Space
September 2017 saw a spate of solar activity, with the Sun emitting 27 M-class and four X-class flares and releasing several powerful coronal mass ejections, or CMEs, between Sept. 6-10.

10.13.17 – NASA Sounding Rocket Instrument Spots Signatures of Long-Sought Small Solar Flares
Like most solar sounding rockets, the second flight of the FOXSI instrument – short for Focusing Optics X-ray Solar Imager – lasted 15 minutes, with just six minutes of data collection.

10.03.17 – Parker Solar Probe Gets Visit From Namesake
Eugene N. Parker, professor emeritus at the University of Chicago, today visited the spacecraft that bears his name: NASA’s Parker Solar Probe.

09.26.17 – Parker Solar Probe Gets Its Revolutionary Heat Shield
On Sept. 25, 2017, media were invited to see NASA’s Parker Solar Probe in its flight configuration at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland, where it is being built.

09.20.17 – Media Invited to View NASA Spacecraft That Will Touch Our Sun
NASA’s Parker Solar Probe will be humanity’s first-ever mission to explore the Sun’s outer atmosphere. Media are invited to see the spacecraft and learn about the mission from noon to 2 p.m. EDT Monday, Sept. 25, at Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory (APL) in Laurel, Maryland, where the probe is being built.

09.11.17 – Sun Erupts With Significant Flare
The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 12:06 p.m. EDT on Sept. 10, 2017. NASA›s Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

09.06.17 – Keep Your Eclipse Glasses to See the Sun’s ‘Freckles’
You don’t have to wait on the next eclipse for another cool opportunity to look at the Sun – our nearest star puts on quite the show of its own without the help of the Moon.

09.05.17 – NASA’s SDO Captures Image of Mid-level Flare
The sun emitted a mid-level solar flare, peaking at 4:33 pm EDT on Sept. 4, 2017. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

09.01.17 – NASA’s Van Allen Probes Survive Extreme Radiation Five Years On
Most satellites, not designed to withstand high levels of particle radiation, wouldn’t last a day in the Van Allen Radiation belts. Trapped by Earth’s magnetic field into two giant belts around the planet, high-energy particles in the region can batter the spacecraft and even interfere with onboard electronics.

08.25.17 – Simulations Reveal Mysteries of the Solar Cycle
Although much has been discovered about our Sun and its constantly erupting surface, scientists are turning to simulations created on Pleiades, NASA’s fastest supercomputer, to better understand the Sun’s ever-evolving magnetic field and how it affects the solar cycle, which produces solar flares.

08.17.17 – Greatest Eclipse and Greatest Duration: What’s the Difference?
During the total solar eclipse on Aug. 21, 2017, the Moon’s shadow will cross the United States from Oregon to South Carolina in just an hour and a half.

08.14.17 – Aug. 21 Eclipse: Up Close and Personal with NASA
NASA will provide the public an unprecedented front row seat of the Aug. 21 total solar eclipse via a live television broadcast, images and streaming video.

08.14.17 – Studying the Sun’s Atmosphere with the Total Solar Eclipse of 2017
A total solar eclipse happens somewhere on Earth about once every 18 months. But because Earth’s surface is mostly ocean, most eclipses are visible over land for only a short time, if at all.

08.11.17 – Sun Erupts With Significant Flare
The sun emitted a significant solar flare, peaking at 12:06 p.m. EDT on Sept. 10, 2017. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured an image of the event.

08.11.17 – NASA Watches the Sun Put a Stop to Its Own Eruption
On Sept. 30, 2014, multiple NASA observatories watched what appeared to be the beginnings of a solar eruption. A filament – a serpentine structure consisting of dense solar material and often associated with solar eruptions – rose from the surface, gaining energy and speed as it soared.

08.10.17 – Day to Night and Back Again: Earth’s Ionosphere During the Total Solar Eclipse
On Aug. 21, 2017, the Moon will slide in front of the Sun and for a brief moment, day will melt into a dusky night. Moving across the country, the Moon’s shadow will block the Sun’s light, and weather permitting, those within the path of totality will be treated to a view of the Sun’s outer atmosphere, called the corona.

08.04.17 – Two Weeks in the Life of a Sunspot
On July 5, 2017, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory watched an active region – an area of intense and complex magnetic fields – rotate into view on the Sun.

07.24.17 – NASA Mission Surfs through Waves in Space to Understand Space Weather
The space surrounding our planet is full of restless charged particles and roiling electric and magnetic fields, which create waves around Earth.

07.12.17 – NASA7’s SDO Watches a Sunspot Turn Toward Earth
An active region on the sun – an area of intense and complex magnetic fields – has rotated into view on the sun and seems to be growing rather quickly in this video captured by NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory between July 5-11, 2017.

06.21.17 – NASA Prepares for Aug. 21 Total Solar Eclipse with Live Coverage, Safety Information
For the first time in 99 years, a total solar eclipse will occur across the entire continental United States, and NASA is preparing to share this experience of a lifetime on Aug. 21.

05.31.17 – NASA Renames Solar Probe Mission to Honor Pioneering Physicist Eugene Parker
NASA has renamed the Solar Probe Plus spacecraft – humanity’s first mission to a star, which will launch in 2018 – as the Parker Solar Probe in honor of astrophysicist Eugene Parker.

05.26.17 – NASA to Make Announcement About First Mission to Touch Sun
NASA will make an announcement about the agency’s first mission to fly directly into our sun’s atmosphere during an event at 11 a.m. EDT Wednesday, May 31, from the University of Chicago’s William Eckhardt Research Center Auditorium.

05.26.17 – NASA’s SDO Sees Partial Eclipse in Space
On May 25, 2017, NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, or SDO, saw a partial solar eclipse in space when it caught the moon passing in front of the sun.

04.26.17 – Scientists Propose Mechanism to Describe Solar Eruptions of All Sizes
From long, tapered jets to massive explosions of solar material and energy, eruptions on the sun come in many shapes and sizes.

04.19.17 – Living with a Star: NASA and Partners Survey Space Weather Science
NASA has long been a leader in understanding the science of space weather, including research into the potential for induced electrical currents to disrupt our power systems.

04.10.17 – Solar Storms Can Drain Electrical Charge Above Earth
New research on solar storms finds that they not only can cause regions of excessive electrical charge in the upper atmosphere above Earth’s poles, they also can do the exact opposite: cause regions that are nearly depleted of electrically charged particles.

04.03.17 – NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory Captured Trio of Solar Flares April 2-3
The sun emitted a trio of mid-level solar flares on April 2-3, 2017. The first peaked at 4:02 a.m. EDT on April 2, the second peaked at 4:33 p.m. EDT on April 2, and the third peaked at 10:29 a.m. EDT on April 3. NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, which watches the sun constantly, captured images of the three events.

03.30.17 – Waves on Sun Give NASA New Insight into Space Weather Forecasting
Our sun is a chaotic place, simmering with magnetic energy and constantly spewing out particles. Sometimes the sun releases solar flares and coronal mass ejections – huge eruptions of charged particles – which contribute to space weather and can interfere with satellites and telecommunications on Earth.

03.15.17 – Relativistic Electrons Uncovered with NASA’s Van Allen Probes
Earth’s radiation belts, two doughnut-shaped regions of charged particles encircling our planet, were discovered more than 50 years ago, but their behavior is still not completely understood.

03.15.17 – NASA’s Solarium Heads to the American Museum of Natural History
NASA’s Solarium invites visitors to get up close and personal with the sun on March 18, 2017, in celebration of Sun-Earth Day at the American Museum of Natural History in New York City.

03.02.17 – NASA Scientists Demonstrate Technique to Improve Particle Warnings that Protect Astronauts
Our constantly-changing sun sometimes erupts with bursts of light, solar material, or ultra-fast energized particles – collectively, these events contribute to space weather.

02.11.17 – NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory: Year 7 Ultra HD (4k)
Published on Feb 11, 2017
The Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) has now captured nearly seven years worth of ultra-high resolution solar footage.

02.03.17 – Eclipse 2017: NASA Supports a Unique Opportunity for Science in the Shadow
The first total solar eclipse in the continental United States in nearly 40 years takes place on Aug. 21, 2017.