Monday, June 24, 2013

IRIS (Picture of the Day: 6/24/13)

IRIS being worked on in a clean room. Source
This exciting satellite is NASA's new Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph (IRIS). It is a satellite designed to orbit Earth is such a way that it is perpetually above the sunrise line so that the sun is always visible. IRIS will try to image and help us learn more about the "interface region" in the solar atmosphere, a region about 3,000 to 6,000 miles thick. This region is theoretically a key transfer point to the sun's hot corona. We don't know very much about the sun, even after having lived under it for so long, so hopefully this satellite will reveal some of its mysteries.
What's especially interesting about IRIS right now is that it will launch Wednesday, June 26. That's this week. Hopefully we'll be able to see some of the things that IRIS will reveal to us in the very near future.
To learn more, check out this article.

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