Stamp Announcement 21-16: Sun Science Stamps


On June 18, 2021 in Greenbelt, MD, the United States Postal Service® will issue the Sun Science stamps (Forever® priced at the First-Class Mail® rate) in 10 designs, in a pressure-sensitive adhesive (PSA) pane of 20 stamps (Item 480800). The stamps will go on sale nationwide June 18, 2021, and must not be sold or canceled before the first-day-of-issue. The Sun Science commemorative pane of 20 stamps may not be split and the stamps may not be sold individually.

The Sun Science stamps highlight stunning images of the Sun that celebrate the science behind the ongoing exploration of our nearest star. The striking colors do not represent the actual colors of the Sun as perceived by human eyesight. Instead, each image is colorized by NASA according to different wavelengths that reveal or highlight specific features of the Sun’s activity. Art director Antonio Alcalá designed the stamps with digital images from NASA’s Solar Dynamics Observatory, a spacecraft launched in February 2010 to keep a constant watch on the Sun from geosynchronous orbit over its ground station in New Mexico.

Availability to Post Offices: Item 480800, Sun Science (Forever Priced at the First-Class Mail Rate) Pane of 20 Stamps

Stamp Fulfillment Services will not make an automatic push distribution to Post Offices. Post Offices may begin ordering stamps before the first-day-of-issue through SFS Web at

How to Order the First-Day-of-Issue Postmark

Customers have 120 days to obtain the first-day-of-issue postmark by mail. They may purchase new stamps at their local Post Office™ or at The Postal Store® website at They must affix the stamps to envelopes of their choice, address the envelopes (to themselves or others), and place them in a larger envelope addressed to:

FDOI – Sun Science Stamps
USPS Stamp Fulfillment Services
8300 NE Underground Drive, Suite 300
Kansas City, MO 64144-9900

After applying the first-day-of-issue postmark, the Postal Service™ will return the envelopes through the mail. There is no charge for the postmark up to a quantity of 50. There is a 5-cent charge for each additional postmark over 50. All orders must be postmarked by October 18, 2021.

How to Order First-Day Covers

The Postal Service also offers first-day covers for new stamp issues and Postal Service stationery items postmarked with the official first-day-of-issue cancellation. Each item has an individual catalog number and is offered in the USA Philatelic catalog and online at Customers may register to receive a free USA Philatelic catalog online at

Locally produced items are not authorized. Only merchandise that has been approved and assigned an item number by Headquarters Retail Marketing may be produced and sold.



Sun Science Stamps

Item Number:


Denomination &
Type of Issue:

First-Class Mail Forever


Pane of 20 (10 designs)



Issue Date & City:

June 18, 2021, Greenbelt MD 20770

Art Director:

Antonio Alcalá, Alexandria VA


Antonio Alcalá, Alexandria VA

Existing Art:

NASA/Solar Dynamic Observatory


Sandra Lane / Michelle Finn

Manufacturing Process:

Flexographic, Foil Stamping


Banknote Corporation of America

Press Type:

Gallus RCS

Stamps per Pane:


Print Quantity:

30,000,000 stamps

Paper Type:

Phosphor, Block Tag

Adhesive Type:



Black, Cyan, Magenta, Yellow

Stamp Orientation:


Image Area (w x h):

1.085 x 1.085 in. / 27.559 x 27.559 mm

Overall Size (w x h):

1.225 x 1.225 in. / 31.115 x 31.115 mm

Full Pane Size (w x h):

7.12 x 6.25 in. / 180.848 x 158.750 mm

Press Sheets Size (w x h):

21.360 x 12.500 in. / 542.544 x 317.500 mm

Plate Size:

120 stamps per revolution

Plate Numbers:

“B” followed by four (4) single digits in bottom two corners

Marginal Markings:


Header: Sun Science • Plate number in bottom two corners


©2021 USPS • USPS logo • 2 barcodes (480800) • Plate position diagram (6) • Promotional text