NASA goes "X" this National Aviation Day as we celebrate the birthday of one of America’s original U.S. aviation pioneers – Orville Wright.
August 19 | 2017
But this year we also celebrate the pioneers of right now – the women and men of NASA who are changing the face of aviation by going “X.” We’re starting the design and build of a series of piloted experimental aircraft – X-planes – for the final proof that new advanced tech and revolutionary aircraft shapes will give us faster, quieter, cleaner ways to get from here to there. Pictured here is an artist concept of possible X-plane aircraft. Since the early days of aviation, X-planes have been used to demonstrate new technologies in their native flying environment. X-planes are the final step after ground tests. They provide valuable data that can lead to changes in regulation, design, operations, and options for travel. We – along with our government, industry and academic partners – have begun the great aviation transformation. Happy #NationalAviationDay! Image credit: NASA
Darker, cooler areas on the Sun – known as sunspots – have been absent for almost two weeks, as of Feb. 1.
February 06 | 2018
A single, tiny one appeared on Jan. 31, but even that is hard to see in this rotating view from our Solar Dynamics Observatory. The video shows a rotating sun in filtered light for the past week, but it is even hard to tell the sun is rotating since there are just about no features. This spotless period is a prelude to the approaching period of solar minimum next year, when the Sun’s activity will be at the low end of its 11-year cycle. Credit: NASA/SDO