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C. A Satellite's Role in Understanding the Universe

Narrator: This is Science Today. Solar flares are the largest explosions in our solar system. Scientists at the University of California, Berkeley are gaining better insight into these explosions thanks to the RHESSI satellite, which was built and designed by scientists at UC Berkeley's Space Sciences Lab and launched by NASA. Robert Lin, a physics professor, is the principal investigator of the RHESSI satellite.

Lin: The interesting part about RHESSI is it makes images of these solar flares, which are these huge explosions on the sun, the biggest explosions in the solar system, but RHESSI makes images in x-rays and gamma rays.

Narrator: Once researchers understand more about these high releases of energy and how they work on the sun, they can apply that knowledge elsewhere in the universe.

Lin: We're very interested in solar flares, but we know in the universe that there are many other phenomena where high energy particles are accelerated and energy release occurs on a very short time.

Narrator: For Science Today, I'm Larissa Branin.