Published on : Aug 17, 2018
NASA is now going ahead with a highly lucrative mission that aims to reach as close to the sun as possible, with the help of the Parker Solar Probe. The launch is slated to take place between the upcoming Friday and Saturday from the Kennedy Space Center in Florida.
More Details about the Parker Solar Probe Mission
This Probe is projected to enter a stable orbit around the sun and sample its radiation, after going through numerous gravity assists and preliminary orbits. The launch can be watched by people all over the globe on NASA’s live stream.
This mission is the first one to be named after a living researcher, Eugene Parker, who made numerous proposals and came up with theories in the 50s, regarding the manner in which stars emit energy and associated radiation. He came up with the concept of solar wind, and his research was hugely influential in the study of the sun and other stars. And finally some of his hypotheses can be tested directly soon enough. Parker had paid a visit to the site where the probe was being constructed, and also will be present at the launch.
The Parker Solar Probe showcases the presence of a strong heat shield or a thermal protection system. This system is expected to resist the dry heat gave out by the sun. The shield is made of superheated carbon composite material in the form of an outer layer, along with a carbon foam core as an inner portion. The entire shield portion is less than a foot thick. However, this shield is said to reduce the temperature of the probe’s instruments by about 2500 degree Fahrenheit to 85 degree Fahrenheit, thus substantially cooling the portion present behind this protective layer. Size-wise, the entire probe is about as large as an average car.