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This Is How We've Reached The Sun

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Published on Nov 9, 2018

This Is How We've Reached The Sun
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Have you ever wondered if it would be possible to land on the sun? The human race is certainly capable of some amazing things. But first of all, we should mention that there is no landing ON the sun since it’s mostly made up of hydrogen gas and it has no solid surface. Besides this fact there is also the scorching temperatures to deal with, not to mention the intense radiation, solar wind, and other energy particles that come from our star.

To get people there on some kind of spaceship without melting, burning, or even self-destructing, would take quite a lot of technology that we currently don’t have. But that doesn’t mean we can’t send something close to the sun to study it. Scientists have been waiting for over 60 years for technology to advance enough so that we could get a closer look. That is where the Parker Solar Probe comes in. This remarkable probe was built with cutting-edge technology that is simply incredible and it is currently racing towards Venus where it will begin its orbit with the star. This mission to study the sun will be one of mankind’s greatest achievements.

The primary goals of the mission will trace how energy and heat move through the solar corona, and to try and discover what accelerates solar wind and other solar energetic particles. The probe will also measure the Sun’s magnetic fields.

The other interesting thing that scientists want to know is why the sun’s surface temperature is far less than the corona around the sun. Scientists understand that it has something to do with the Suns magnetic field that connects the sun’s surface to its outer atmosphere. It’s a key mystery to understanding the Sun and solar physics, and with the probes help, we’re about to figure it out.

What we do know is that the Sun is basically a big hydrogen gas fusion bomb 93 million miles away from Earth with a surface temperature of 5600° Celsius, which is 4000° higher than the melting point of steel. That’s 7232 degrees Fahrenheit with a core temperature of 27 million degrees Fahrenheit. And if you weren’t sure just how big the sun is, you could fit 1.3 million Earth inside it.
It’s big, it's hot, and getting anywhere close to it has been a serious challenge… Until now.

The spacecraft is supposed to go into its first orbit with the star on November 2018 and get closer to the sun on 24 different approaches each one swinging it closer into the Sun's atmosphere or the Sun's ‘corona.’ That glowing halo of plasma extends about 5 million miles into outer space around the Sun. It’s a bit hard to see it unless you’re using a coronograph or looking at the sun during a total solar eclipse. The probe will have to withstand incredible amounts of heat and radiation, but it will zip in towards the sun to measure and gather data. The probe will also have to withstand being bombarded by tiny fast-moving particles, some of which will hit the spacecraft. To fix this problem the Parker Probe is fitted with Kevlar blankets to protect itself from impacts.

When the mission is over, the Parker Probe will end up going out in style. Like Cassini plunged into Saturn’s atmosphere, or the Magellan satellite became part of Venus, the Parker probe will eventually become part of the object that it went to study.

We hope you enjoyed this video. What do you think about the mission to the sun? What things would you like to discover? Let us know in the comments below. We want to thank you for watching!

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