NOVA Sun Lab
Despite its apparently steady glow, the Sun is a churning mass of superhot plasma that regularly produces powerful flares and storms that can knock out power and communication systems on Earth. This interactive explores what makes the Sun so volatile and gives you access to the same data, images, and tools that NASA scientists use to predict solar storms. For Educators: In the Sun Lab, students will explore the structure of the Sun, solar flares, coronal mass ejections (CMEs), Earth’s magnetic field, the electromagnetic spectrum, how space weather affects Earth, the physics of light, and telescopes. In the Open Investigation, students can use the NASA Helioviewer to explore their own scientific questions about the Sun and gather data. Middle School: — MS-ESS1-1—Develop and use a model of the Earth-sun-moon system to describe the cyclic patterns of lunar phases, eclipses of the sun and moon, and seasons. High School: — HS-ESS1-1—Develop a model based on evidence to illustrate the life span of the sun and the role of nuclear fusion in the sun’s core to release energy in the form of radiation.