Europe’s audacious Solar Orbiter probe has lifted off on its quest to study the Sun from close quarters.
The €1.5bn (£1.3bn) mission is packed with cameras and sensors that should reveal remarkable new insights on the workings of our star.
Scientists want to better understand what drives its dynamic behaviour.
The spacecraft launched aboard an Atlas rocket, which lifted off from Cape Canaveral in Florida at 04:03 GMT (23:03 local time Sunday).
The Sun will occasionally eject billions of tonnes of matter and entangled magnetic fields that can disrupt activity at Earth.
The worst of these storms will trip the electronics on satellites, interfere with radio communications and even knock over power grids.
Researchers hope the knowledge gained from Solar Orbiter (SolO) will improve the models used to forecast the worst of the outbursts.