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Some 5 billion years ago, our Sun turned on. It had a violent youth, but now it's settled down into middle age.

Other stars, larger than the Sun, will one day go supernova. Supernovas enrich succeeding generations of stars and solar systems with heavy elements.

Some 5 billion years from now, our Sun will gradually expand into a red giant. By then, perhaps, our space-faring descendants will have migrated to safety!

Our Sun is neither the largest nor the smallest of stars.

But for us humans, it's "just right." In the past decades, NASA and its international partners have launched an armada of spacecraft which work with telescopes on Earth to understand our Sun as never before. Future plans include probes to fly into the Sun, and out of our solar system into interstellar space.