A History of the Sun, Our Closest Star

Aerial photo of four pairs of hands using different handheld smart devices

This event will be a one-day conference on the 21st November 2015 at St Cross College, Oxford on the history of the Sun. The Sun, our closest star, has been a source of fascination and awe since the very earliest civilisations and was worshipped by many ancient peoples who built monuments to mark the position of the Sun during the year. It was long believed that the Sun orbited the Earth until Copernicus and then Galileo proposed a heliocentric Solar System. By the nineteenth century solar astronomy was gaining momentum with observations of sunspots and measurements of absorption lines in the spectrum of light from the Sun and in the 1930s the Sun's mechanism for the production of energy was determined to be nuclear fusion. Since the 1970s there have been a series of increasingly sophisticated satellite missions which have discovered many more intriguing features of the Sun and significantly progressed our knowledge of our closest star, however, a number of mysteries remain including the coronal heating problem. This conference seeks to review the history of the Sun and engage with the latest solar research on the outstanding questions.

Registration and attendance at the conference are FREE.

Click here to view details of the conference and how to register.

Click here to view the event poster.


Humanities & Science

Contact name: Dr Joanna Ashbourn (HAPP Director)

Contact email: joanna.ashbourn@stx.ox.ac.uk

Audience: Open to all