NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory (SDO) is designed to probe solar variability in a way that no other mission can match. High-speed cameras on SDO will take rapid-fire snapshots of solar flares and other magnetic activity. This will have the same transformative effect on solar physics that the invention of high-speed photography had on many sciences in the 19th century.
SDO doesn’t stop at the stellar surface. A sensor on the observatory can actually look inside the Sun at the very source of solar activity—the solar dynamo itself. There SDO will find vital clues to the mystery of the solar cycle and help scientists predict the future of solar activity. (NASA)