About IRIS Movie of the Day
IRIS is NASA's Interface Region Imaging Spectrograph. Built for NASA by Lockheed Martin Solar & Astrophysics Laboratory (LMSAL) in Palo Alto, CA, USA and launched in June 2013, IRIS focuses on the interface region between the relatively cool (6,000 K) solar surface or photosphere and its hot (~ millions of degrees) outer atmosphere or corona. IRIS takes images in four different wavelengths in the ultraviolet. These passbands are each sensitive to ionized gases or plasmas of different temperatures: Mg II wing (2830 Angstrom, green movies, 6,000 K), Mg II k (2796 Angstrom, brown movies, 10,000 K), C II (1330 Angstrom, orange movies, 25,000 K), Si IV (1400 Angstrom, reddish movies, 80,000 K). IRIS is a spectrograph and also obtains spectra along a vertical line (seen as a dark line that often moves around in the movies). IRIS splits the ultraviolet lights into its constituents or colors, allowing scientists to determine velocities, temperatures and densities of the plasma on the Sun. IRIS operations are planned by scientists of the IRIS team at LMSAL, Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory (SAO), Montana State University (MSU), High Altitude Observatory (HAO), University of Oslo, Norway (UiO), NASA's Goddard Space Flight Center (GSFC) and the European Space Agency (ESA), and uploaded by IRIS' Mission Operations Center at NASA Ames Research Center to the otherwise autonomously operating spacecraft every week day. IRIS data becomes publicly available ( http://iris.lmsal.com/data.html) within a few days of capturing the observations. IRIS science planners regularly upload new IRIS movies of the day to this web-page when new observations of interesting, beautiful or weird phenomena catch their attention.