Today’s Solutions: April 24, 2024

This week, NASA and the European Space Agency (ESA) released the closest images ever taken of the Sun. Close, however is a relative term. The new photos were taken by the Solar Orbiter at 48 million miles from the Sun. 

The Orbiter was launched in February, and the photos captured were taken in June. They show a level of detail never before seen on the source of energy for our planet. Using an Extreme Ultraviolet Imager, the craft captured images of what scientists are calling “campfires,” mini-explosions, or nanoflares millions of times smaller than solar flares, that help heat the Sun’s outer atmosphere. 

The camera on board was originally mounted just to provide feedback about the craft’s progression, so it was surprising to scientists that the images actually uncovered previously unknown details about our Sun. 

The Solar Orbiter’s journey has not been without its challenges. In June, it had a run-in with comet ATLAS’s ion and dust tails. The pandemic also shut down mission control at the European Space Operations Center in Germany for more than a week. Despite the setbacks, the Orbiter plans to continue to capture information about the Sun, specifically its poles which flip every 11 years to begin a new cycle of solar activity. These flips can jeopardize power stations on Earth and could put astronauts in danger, so more information about these events is critical. 

These images are not only intriguing and beautiful, they will also give astronauts needed information for the Artemis program missions to the Moon. Scientific knowledge is constantly expanding, and when it comes to our solar system, there is always more to learn and explore!

Solutions News Source Print this article
More of Today's Solutions

The EPA implements solutions for forever chemical cleanup

In a remarkable step toward environmental protection, the Environmental Protection Agency (EPA) took decisive steps last Friday to address the dangers of two forever ...

Read More

What is “weaponized kindness” and how can you protect your relationship from it?

In the delicate dance of love, kindness often serves as the melody that orchestrates harmony between couples. From modest gestures like morning coffees to ...

Read More

How to cook your veggies to boost their anti-inflammatory powers

Every year the cold winter weather doesn’t only put frost on the grass, it also brings an increased chance of getting sick. And that’s ...

Read More

Newly discovered “nano-chameleon” fits atop your fingertip

In the northern regions of Madagascar, scientists have discovered the smallest reptile species known to humankind: the Brookesia nana, also known as the nano-chameleon. ...

Read More