IRIS achieved first light on 17 July 2013. NASA noted, "IRIS's first images showed a multitude of thin, fibril-like structures that have never been seen before, revealing enormous contrasts in density and temperature occur throughout this region even between neighboring loops that are only a few hundred miles apart." On 31 October 2013, calibrated IRIS data and images were released on the project website. A preprint describing the satellite and initial data has been released on the arXiv.
Data collected from the IRIS spacecraft has shown that the interface region of the sun is significantly more complex than previously known. This includes features described as solar heat bombs, high-speed plasma jets, nano-flares, and mini-tornadoes. These features are an important step in understanding the transfer of heat to the corona.
^De Pontieu, B.; Rouppe van der Voort, L.; McIntosh, S. W.; Pereira, T. M. D.; Carlsson, M. et al. (17 October 2014). "On the prevalence of small-scale twist in the solar chromosphere and transition region". Science346 (6207). doi:10.1126/science.1255732.
Payloads are separated by bullets ( · ), launches by pipes ( | ). Manned flights are indicated in bold text. Uncatalogued launch failures are listed in italics. Payloads deployed from other spacecraft are denoted in (brackets).