This short video (1:30) briefly describes the goal of the SDO mission and why it is important that we continue to observe the sun.
This visualization tours the regions of near-Earth orbit; the Earth's magnetosphere, sometimes called geospace; the region between the Earth and the Sun; and finally out beyond Pluto, where Voyager 1 and 2 are exploring the boundary between the Sun and the rest of our Milky Way galaxy.
STEREO (Solar TErrestrial RElations Observatory) is a solar observation mission which was launched on October 26, 2006 at 00:52 GMT. Two nearly identical spacecraft were launched into orbits that cause them to pull respectively further ahead of and fall gradually behind the earth. This will enable stereoscopic imaging of the Sun and solar phenomena, such as Coronal Mass Ejections.
"Blackout" takes you on a journey from the Sun to the Earth as eruptions known as solar storms travel to Earth and effect our lives in ways we still don't completely understand. 3-D animations bring to life the journey, through 150 million kilometers of space, of these outbursts of "space weather". Part 1: Our Active Sun
Part 2: Solar Storms and Power Systems
Part 3: The Solar Wind and the Earth
Part 4: When Solar Plasma Distorts Earth's Magnetic Field
Earth's climate was seriously chilled during the Maunder Minimum (1645-1715) when no 11-year sunspot cycles were detected.