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NASA's Parker Solar Probe is back to the sun again

The depiction of an artist by Parker Solar Probe.
Picture: NASA

Since we've heard of Parker Solar Probe for the last time, a NASA spacecraft is likely to be a piece of molten metal. The update of the Space Agency shows that all systems now go to a solar-powered probe that recently launched the second of 24 planned star orbits.

Parker Solar Probe completed the first orbital journey around the Sun, reaching the aphelion point, that is, the remote orbital distance from our star, January 19, 2019, reported by NASA. This is again a journey to its destination, and the probe will probably reach the next perihelium, the closest point to the sun by the orbital path, on April 4, 2019.

Parker Solar Probe has reached this important milestone in the 161 day mission, and everything seems to be going on.

"It has been an illuminating and exciting first orbit," said Ander Dannman's (Parker Solar Probe) project manager. "We learned a lot about how the spacecraft works and responds to the sun, and I'm proud to say that the team's predictions have been very accurate."

Picture: NASA

The probe is currently transmitting data to Earth using NASA's Deep Space Network, which is a terrestrial radio antenna and a remote device designed to support spacecraft missions. So far, the probe has sent 17 gigabytes of valuable scientific data back to Earth, said NASA, but it won't be until April that all of its first residence around the Sun will come home. The spacecraft collects inexperienced data with its toolkit – data that will help scientists learn more about the Sun Coron, and as a star material and a star produced by the star, move around the room at high speed.

Project scientist Noor Raouafi said that the data collected so far has pointed to "many new things that we have not seen before and possible new discoveries." Parker Solar probe, he said in a statement, "goes beyond the mission's promise of revealing the secrets of our sun. ”

Another important milestone was a few weeks before aphelion, when Parker entered full operational status, or E phase, New Year's Day. All probe systems are now online and operate in each specification, NASA reports.

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The Parker team can now install their sites in the April perihelion, when the Sun probe sits 24.1 million kilometers (15 million miles), which will create a new record for the man-made object. On October 29, 2018, Parker set a close-up record when it reached 42.7 million kilometers (26.5 million miles) off the Sun's surface, destroying the old record held by Helios 2 probe. The closest distance of the probe is expected in June 2025, when it is about 6.16 million kilometers (3.83 million miles) from the Sun. Nearby, Parker will require about 88 days to complete the orbit around the star, and it will travel about 430,000 miles per hour – fast enough to get from Philadelphia to Washington in one second, D.C.

In preparation for the April perihelion, the mission controllers make a storage location by deleting files that have already been sent to the Earth and sending updated positioning and navigation information, including an automated command sequence that the probe should keep for about a month.

Godspeed your second trip around the Sun, Parker probe!


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