The management of St. Lucia News Online sincerely apologises to its readers and advertisers for the reduction in news updates over the past weeks due to issues beyond our control that we can not legally/personally disclose at this time. Thankfully, there was no downtime but we regret the lack of updates due, to as mentioned, issues beyond our control. We thank you for your patience as normalcy is being restored to our daily coverage.

WORLD: NASA sending probe to ‘touch’ the sun—here’s why

By National Geographic

 Share This On:

PHOTOGRAPH BY NASA/SDO

PHOTOGRAPH BY NASA/SDO

NASA has embarked on many successful missions—from rocketing astronauts to the moon to launching the first spacecraft to reach interstellar space. But it hasn’t yet sent a mission to the sun. The deterrent? Our nearest star’s searing heat.

The surface of the sun is 10,000°F, but its outer atmosphere—the corona—soars to some 3.5 million degrees Fahrenheit.

“This temperature inversion is a big mystery that no one has been able to explain,” says Nicola Fox, project scientist for the Parker Solar Probe, the NASA mission that aims to finally get close to the sun.

Today, NASA announced that for the first time in its history, a spacecraft is being formally named after a living person—previously known as Solar Probe Plus, the Parker Solar Probe was renamed for Eugene Parker, the astrophysicist who discovered solar wind in 1958.

The mission is made possible by a shield constructed from a carbon-carbon composite, which will keep the probe’s instruments safe in the 70-degree range.

Launching as early as July 31, 2018, the probe will make 24 orbits of the sun. It will get within four million miles of the star with the gravitational assist of seven Venus flybys.

That’s close enough to find answers to the sun’s other big mystery: what creates the solar wind, the charged particles that accelerate from the sun and wreak havoc on Earth’s electrical systems.

“We see the sun every day, but we don’t know much about it,” says Fox. “The sun is the last major place for us to go.

(0)(1)
This article was posted in its entirety as received by stlucianewsonline.com. This media house does not correct any spelling or grammatical error within press releases and commentaries. The views expressed therein are not necessarily those of stlucianewsonline.com, its sponsors or advertisers.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published.

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.