Probing the Sun
Scientists have gained much of their knowledge about the Sun from observations made on Earth over many years. However, much of our current knowledge has come from space probes that have been sent on missions to observe the Sun. These probes have provided accurate information about the Sun’s temperature, atmosphere, composition, magnetic fields, flares, prominences, sunspots and internal dynamics. A knowledge of these probes and the data they collected helps us to better understand the various processes in the Sun and the effect solar radiation has on Earth. This chapter provides information about early solar space probes (pre-1990) as well as the more recent (post-1990) probes and future probes.