Learn about our sun

The sun is a window into our universe!
By studying the sun, we deepen our understanding of all the other stars you see in the sky & beyond…


Partial Lunar Eclipse • November 18–19, 2021
Total Solar Eclipse • December 4, 2021

Eclipses occur about 2-3 times a year, but only part of the world gets to see it in-person. The next Annular Solar Eclipse will be visible in parts of the United States, Mexico, and several Central American and South American countries on October 14, 2023 at 15:03 UTC. Stay tuned for details!

Photo Credit: Stefan Seip

It’s Aurora Season

The equinox arrived September 22, 2021 at 19:21 UTC, bringing the Northern Lights season (September until March).


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Current Observations

The Sun as Seen by the Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) & the Solar and Heliospheric Observatory (SOHO).

Exciting Missions to the Sun…

Solar Orbiter

Photo Credit: Credit: ESA/ATG medialab

Solar Orbiter

The spacecraft will orbit over the uncharted polar regions, and investigate the Sun-Earth connection.

Launched February 9, 2020 • 11:03 PM EST • ULA Atlas V

Led by the European Space Agency (ESA) with strong NASA support


Parker Solar Probe

Photo Credit: Credit: NASA’s Scientific Visualization Studio and Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory

Parker Solar Probe

Humanity’s First Visit to a Star

Parker Solar Probe is a historic mission, flying into the Sun’s atmosphere (or corona) for the first time! It will have 24 orbits around the sun, traveling at a top speed of 430,000 mph—the fastest man-made object ever! It can also withstand temperatures outside the spacecraft that reach nearly 2,500°F (1,377°C)!

Launched August 12, 2018 at 3:31am EDT