Sun News -- ScienceDaily News about the Sun. Science articles on Sunspots and the Sun's Corona; evidence the Sun has a companion star; images from the far side of the Sun and more.

  • Origins of Sun's swirling spicules discovered
    on June 22, 2017 at 9:14 pm

    For the first time, a computer simulation -- so detailed it took a full year to run -- shows how spicules form, helping scientists understand how spicules can break free of the sun's surface and surge upward so quickly. […]

  • The curious case of the warped Kuiper Belt
    on June 22, 2017 at 2:40 pm

    The plane of the solar system is warped in the belt's outer reaches, signaling the presence of an unknown Mars-to-Earth-mass planetary object far beyond Pluto, according to new research.&nbs […]

  • Making waves with the hot electrons within Earth's radiation belts
    on June 20, 2017 at 4:11 pm

    An international team of scientists recently discovered the role that hot electrons may play in the waves and fluctuations detected by satellites. The results are based on data collected by the Van Allen Probes, twin robotic spacecraft launched by NASA in 2012 to help scientists better understand these belt regions. […]

  • New branch in family tree of exoplanets discovered
    on June 19, 2017 at 4:02 pm

    Researchers have classified exoplanets in much the same way that biologists identify new animal species. […]

  • MAVEN's top 10 discoveries at Mars
    on June 16, 2017 at 5:40 pm

    Since its launch in November 2013 and its orbit insertion in September 2014, MAVEN has been exploring the upper atmosphere of Mars. MAVEN is bringing insight to how the sun stripped Mars of most of its atmosphere, turning a planet once possibly habitable to microbial life into a barren desert world. […]

  • Low-mass stars always born with a sibling: Many, like our sun, split up
    on June 14, 2017 at 1:19 pm

    Though astronomers have long known that many if not most stars are binaries, the question has always been, Were they born that way, or did one star capture another? Astronomers teamed up to systematically study very young stars inside their nest eggs, called dense cores, in the Perseus molecular cloud and concluded that all sunlike stars are born as wide binaries. Most subsequently split up, while the rest become tight binaries. […]

  • Cloudy with a chance of radiation: NASA studies simulated radiation
    on June 13, 2017 at 10:51 pm

    NASA's Human Research Program (HRP) is simulating space radiation on Earth following upgrades to the NASA Space Radiation Laboratory (NSRL) at the US Department of Energy's Brookhaven National Laboratory. These upgrades help researchers on Earth learn more about the effects of ionizing space radiation to keep astronauts safe on a journey to Mars. […]

  • Jupiter is one old-timer, scientist finds
    on June 12, 2017 at 7:42 pm

    Jupiter is the oldest planet in our solar system, an international group of scientists has found. […]

  • Ingredient of life found around infant Sun-like stars
    on June 8, 2017 at 11:29 am

    ALMA has observed stars like the Sun at a very early stage in their formation and found traces of methyl isocyanate -- a chemical building block of life. This is the first ever detection of this prebiotic molecule towards solar-type protostars, the sort from which our Solar System evolved. The discovery could help astronomers understand how life arose on Earth. […]

  • Century-old relativity experiment used to measure a white dwarf's mass
    on June 7, 2017 at 6:26 pm

    Astronomers have used the sharp vision of NASA’s Hubble Space Telescope to repeat a century-old test of Einstein’s general theory of relativity. The team measured the mass of white dwarf Stein 2051 B, the burned-out remnant of a normal star, by seeing how much it deflects the light from a background star. The gravitational microlensing method data provide a solid estimate of the white dwarf’s mass and yield insights into theories of the structure and composition of the burned-out star. […]

  • New confirmation of Einstein's General Theory of Relativity
    on June 7, 2017 at 4:38 pm

    Albert Einstein predicted that whenever light from a distant star passes by a closer object, gravity acts as a kind of magnifying lens, brightening and bending distant starlight. Yet, Einstein added, 'There is no hope of observing this phenomenon directly.' Now, researchers have done just that, saying that the discovery opens a new window to understanding 'the history and evolution of galaxies such as our own.' […]

  • Mini-flares potentially jeopardize habitability of planets circling red dwarf stars
    on June 6, 2017 at 4:33 pm

    Solar flares and associated eruptions can trigger auroras on Earth or, more ominously, damage satellites and power grids. Could flares on cool, red dwarf stars cause even more havoc to orbiting planets, even rendering them uninhabitable? To help answer that question, astronomers sought to find out how many flares such stars typically unleash. […]

  • Hubble 'traps' a vermin galaxy
    on June 2, 2017 at 6:38 pm

    A new Hubble image shows a distant galaxy as it begins to align with and pass behind a star sitting nearer to us within the Milky Way. […]

  • Cold brown dwarf discovered close to our solar system
    on June 2, 2017 at 3:28 pm

    A new citizen-science tool released earlier this year to help astronomers pinpoint new worlds lurking in the outer reaches of our solar system has already led to a discovery: a brown dwarf a little more than 100 light years away from the Sun. Just six days after the launch of the Backyard Worlds: Planet 9 website, four users alerted the science team to the curious object, whose presence has since been confirmed via telescope. […]

  • Frost on moon's surface: New evidence
    on May 31, 2017 at 3:07 pm

    Scientists using data from NASA's Lunar Reconnaissance Orbiter have identified bright areas in craters near the moon's south pole that are cold enough to have frost present on the surface. […]

  • Giant ringed planet likely cause of mysterious eclipses
    on May 31, 2017 at 1:25 pm

    A giant gas planet -- up to 50x the mass of Jupiter, encircled by a ring of dust -- is likely hurtling around a star over 1000 light years away from Earth, according to international team of astronomers. […]

  • Extreme Jupiter weather and magnetic fields
    on May 25, 2017 at 6:58 pm

    New observations about the extreme conditions of Jupiter's weather and magnetic fields by astronomers have contributed to the revelations and insights coming from the first close passes of Jupiter by NASA's Juno mission. […]

  • Juno mission to Jupiter delivers first science results
    on May 25, 2017 at 6:15 pm

    NASA's Juno mission is rewriting what scientists thought they knew about Jupiter specifically, and gas giants in general, according to a pair of Science papers released today. The Juno spacecraft has been in orbit around Jupiter since July 2016, passing within 3,000 miles of the equatorial cloudtops. […]

  • CAST project places new limitations on dark matter
    on May 23, 2017 at 2:43 pm

    CERN research results deliver no evidence for the existence of solar axions. […]

  • A new approach to forecasting solar flares?
    on May 22, 2017 at 12:10 pm

    The emerging discipline of space meteorology aims to reliably predict solar flares so that we may better guard against their effects. Using 3D numerical models, an international team has discovered a proxy that could be used to forecast an eruptive event. The proxy is associated with magnetic helicity, which reflects the extent of twist and entanglement of the magnetic field. […]

  • NASA mission uncovers a dance of electrons in space
    on May 18, 2017 at 6:02 pm

    NASA's MMS mission studies how electrons spiral and dive around the planet in a complex dance dictated by the magnetic and electric fields, and a new study revealed a bizarre new type of motion exhibited by these electrons. […]

  • Moon orbits third largest dwarf planet in our solar system
    on May 18, 2017 at 6:02 pm

    Astronomers have uncovered a moon orbiting the third largest dwarf planet, 2007 OR10, in the frigid outskirts of our solar system called the Kuiper Belt. […]

  • First direct exploration of magnetic fields in the upper solar atmosphere
    on May 18, 2017 at 2:41 pm

    Scientists have explored the magnetic field in upper solar atmosphere by observing the polarization of ultraviolet light with the CLASP sounding rocket experiment during its 5-minute flight in space on Sept. 3, 2015. The data show that the structures of the solar chromosphere and transition region are more complicated than expected. It is proven that ultraviolet spectropolarimetry can be used in future investigations of the magnetic fields in upper solar chromosphere and transition region. […]

  • Space weather events linked to human activity
    on May 17, 2017 at 3:16 pm

    Human activities, like nuclear tests and radio transmissions, have been changing near-Earth space and weather, and have created artificial radiation belts, damaged satellites and induced auroras. […]

  • NASA's EPIC view spots flashes on Earth
    on May 15, 2017 at 5:30 pm

    One million miles from Earth, a NASA camera is capturing unexpected flashes of light reflecting off our planet. […]

  • Primitive atmosphere discovered around 'Warm Neptune'
    on May 11, 2017 at 6:19 pm

    A pioneering new study uncovering the 'primitive atmosphere' surrounding a distant world could provide a pivotal breakthrough in the search to how planets form and develop in far-flung galaxies. […]

  • Supercomputer can disprove the theory of sunspot formation
    on May 10, 2017 at 1:15 pm

    A group of researchers believes that contrary to a common model sunspots form near the Sun's surface. […]

  • Space weather model simulates solar storms from nowhere
    on May 8, 2017 at 3:23 pm

    A kind of solar storm has puzzled scientists for its lack of typical warning signs: They seem to come from nowhere, and scientists call them stealth CMEs. Now, scientists have developed a model simulating their evolution. […]

  • Chemical engineer explains oxygen mystery on comets
    on May 8, 2017 at 12:32 pm

    A chemical engineer who normally develops new ways to fabricate microprocessors in computers has figured out how to explain a nagging mystery in space -- why comets expel oxygen gas, the same gas we humans breathe. […]

  • Nearby star is a good model of our early solar system
    on May 2, 2017 at 6:19 pm

    Scientists have confirmed a nearby star's planetary system contains separate belts of asteroids, similar to our own solar system. The star is also about one-fifth the age of our sun. All that makes this star a good model of the early days of our solar system. […]