Observatories the world over will be watching on Tuesday as Venus crosses the face of the sun for the last time in any of our lifetimes. It will be a banner day for astronomers, providing ample opportunities for measuring Venus' characteristics, and for determining some rules that will help in the hunt for exoplanets. But it's also just an amazing thing to behold, and you can watch it, too — as long as you follow some safety precautions.
Sunspots may be going into hibernation, a phenomenon unseen since the 17th century that could lead to cooler global temperatures, scientists said Tuesday. It’s not clear how rising temperatures from greenhouse gas emissions may offset global cooling, and scientists are still not totally sure how our star affects Earth’s climate, however.
In a mission to learn more about the sun’s inner workings, NASA is planning to launch a specially shielded spacecraft in 2018 that will plunge into the solar atmosphere. The car-sized Solar Probe Plus will explore an area just 4 million miles from the star’s surface, the last region of the solar system to be explored by humans.
Five amazing, clean technologies that will set us free, in this month's energy-focused issue. Also: how to build a better bomb detector, the robotic toys that are raising your children, a human catapult, the world's smallest arcade, and much more.