Iron (Fe) is the element with atomic number 26, symbol Fe. It has four stable isotopes. It is the most stable product of fusion in stars.
Because iron can be detected at a distance, the ratio of iron to hydrogen is used as an approximate measure of metallicity. This is expressed as the numerical value [Fe/H], which indicates the log of the ratio of iron atoms to hydrogen atoms (e.g., of a star, cloud, or galaxy) minus the same for the Sun, i.e., "[Fe/H] = 0.0" means "same iron abundance as the Sun".
Shock can excited iron [Fe II] forbidden lines at 1.257 micron and 1.644 micron, which can be observed.
Iron lines are a target of solar observation: various solar emission lines, including many from ionized iron, are used in observations of the Sun's surface and corona; the many lines from iron ionization states up into the twenties provide clues regarding the temperature, which may reveal which atmospheric layer produced them, and their Doppler shift may reveal radial velocity, a clue to details of solar activity.