Early this morning, there was a total solar eclipse across Antarctica!
During a total solar eclipse, the Moon blocks out the Sun, creating the illusion of night during the day and a breathtaking sight in our sky.
Join NASA Edge at 1:30 p.m. EST on NASA TV to see the eclipse and learn more: https://go.nasa.gov/3nTvrOA
Learning from eclipses
Eclipses have played a major role in scientific discoveries, from the Sun’s structure to the element helium. The corona – the Sun’s outer atmosphere – normally can’t be seen because of the bright solar surface, but during an eclipse, the corona emerges, offering unique science opportunities.
The corona up close
What we can see from the Sun’s corona during an eclipse can teach us a lot about our star. Imagine what we’d learn if we actually touched the corona? NASA has sent Parker Solar Probe to the Sun to do just that. ?
Eclipsing right along…
While today’s eclipse may be over, you still have opportunities to watch eclipses in person! An annular solar eclipse will cross the U.S. in 2023, and a total solar eclipse will cross the U.S. in 2024. For now, see what’s next in our #SolarTour by joining in tomorrow.
Our solar tour begins on Earth. From here, one star shines brighter than all the rest. It’s the closest star and the center of our solar system: our Sun. Earth is in the Goldilocks zone, just the right distance from the Sun to be habitable.
A mission to touch the Sun
We can answer some questions about the Sun from 93 million miles away on Earth, but to learn more, we knew we’d have to venture to our nearest star. In 2018, NASA launched Parker Solar Probe, our mission to touch the Sun.
Why won’t it melt?
Flying close to the Sun is risky business (just ask Icarus), but engineers were up to the task. Check out this video to learn how they built a spacecraft that won’t melt, even when it’s heated to temperatures up to 2500° F. Hint: don’t use wax!
Now, we’re heading south to catch a special event where day becomes night and the Moon is the star of the show. Can you guess what we’ll see?
The Sun has an immense influence in space. It shapes and impacts our entire solar system in ways that we are still trying to understand.
To help unravel some of the Sun’s biggest mysteries, NASA launched Parker Solar Probe in 2018 to study the Sun up close. This year, the mission has big news!
Follow along on our Solar Tour: Starting tomorrow, Dec. 3, we will begin our 12-day journey from Earth to the Sun. Each day, we’ll make pit stops to learn how our Sun influences different places across the solar system. The grand tour will end with Parker Solar Probe’s big announcement on Dec. 14 at our final destination!