NASA lifts off World’s first mission to touch the burning Sun
NASA’s Parker Solar Probe will perform the closest-ever observations of the Sun’s outer atmosphere, called the Corona.
NASA’s Parker Solar Probe, mankind’s first mission to ‘touch’ the sun, has been launched today on a seven-year long journey to unlock the mysteries of our star’s fiery outer atmosphere on space weather.
Lift off took place from Space Launch Complex 37 at Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in the US early today.
The launch of the United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket carrying the spacecraft was scrubbed yesterday due to violation of a launch limit, resulting in a hold.
The car-sized spacecraft will travel directly into the Sun’s atmosphere, about four million miles from its surface-and more than seven times closer than any spacecraft has come before, thanks to its innnovative Thermal Protection System. The USD 1.5 billion mission will perform the closest ever observation of a star when it travels through the Sun’s outer atmosphere called Corona.
It will make 25 passes through the Corona during its seven year mission. The mission will rely on measurements and imaging to revolutionise our understanding of the Corona and how processes then ultimately affect near-Earth Space.
Parker Solar probe wil explore the corona, a region of the Sun only seen from Earth when the Moon blocks out the Sun’s bright face during Total Solar eclipse. The Corona holds the answer to many of scientists outstanding question about the Sun’s activity and processes.