Close encounter

Solar Orbiter captures its closest pass by the Sun in spectacular video

See the Sun at rest.

artist's rendering of Solar Orbiter approaching Sun


Life on Earth is absolutely dependent on the Sun, but we know precious little about the giant ball of fire around which our lives literally revolve.

ESA’s Solar Orbiter

is meant to fill in a few of the gaps in our knowledge by taking images and other measurements, like readings of radio waves and magnetic fields, of some of the Sun’s most mysterious phenomena.