An out-of-this spacecraft is slated to launch this July. Dubbed ‘Humanity’s first mission to the Sun’, NASA is all set to launch its spacecraft Parker #SolarProbe. The spacecraft is currently undergoing final preparations for its launch scheduled for July 31. Parker Solar Probe was flown by the US Air where it will continue testing, and eventually undergo final assembly and mating to the third stage of the Delta IV Heavy launch vehicle.
NASA has announced that post the launch of Parker Solar Probe, which is referred to as Humanity’s first mission to the Sun, the spacecraft will orbit directly through the solar atmosphere – the corona – closer to the surface than any human-made object has ever gone.
Talking about the spacecraft, NASA said, while facing brutal heat and radiation, the mission will reveal the fundamental science behind what drives the solar wind, the constant outpouring of material from the Sun that shapes planetary atmospheres and affects space weather near Earth.
Check out NASA’s tweet that confirmed the launch date of Parker Solar Probe:
Revealing about one of the most critical elements of the spacecraft, NASA told, just prior to being fuelled, one of the most critical elements of Parker Solar Probe, the thermal protection system (TPS), or heat shield, will be installed. Also, for the next several months, the spacecraft will undergo comprehensive testing. To survive the temperatures in the Sun’s corona (just 9.8 million kilometres from the surface of our star), Parker Solar Probe will be installed with a breakthrough technology, known as TPS.
Andy Driesman, Parker Solar Probe project manager from the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in the US talked about the spacecraft. Andy said, “There are many milestones to come for Parker Solar Probe and the amazing team of men and women who have worked so diligently to make this mission a reality.” He also revealed, “The installation of the TPS will be our final major step before encapsulation and integration onto the launch vehicle.” (As reported by PTI)
One of the tweets by NASA which grabbed the eyeballs said, We’re sending a spacecraft to “touch” the Sun and you can send your name along with it! Submit your name for a journey to our closest star with our Parker #SolarProbe this summer. Details on how to add your name to the microchip: https://www.go.nasa.gov/HotTicket
Have a look at the tweet:
To be launched from NASA’s Kennedy Space Center in Florida, throughout its seven-year mission, Parker Solar Probe will explore the Sun’s outer atmosphere and make critical observations to answer decades-old questions about the physics of stars. The spacecraft’s data will also be useful in improving forecasts of major eruptions on the Sun and the subsequent space weather events that impact technology on Earth, as well as satellites and astronauts in space.