NASA Mission to SUN: US space agency NASA is going to do the impossible in 2018 as it has plans to launch its first mission that will reach the atmosphere of the Sun. If NASA succeeds in the mission, it will become the first space agency in the world to send a daring mission to the heat spewing celestial body.
NASA will be making a major announcement about the mission Sun on May 31 at an event to be held at the University of Chicago’s William Eckhardt Research Center Auditorium at 11 am EDT (8.30 pm IST). NASA’s television and website will live stream the ebent.
About Solar Probe Plus spacecraft:
The mission is named Solar Probe Plus and is scheduled to be launched in the summer of 2018. NASA will send a spacecraft that will study the outer atmosphere of the Sun. It will make critical observations providing answers to questions such as how stars work. Physicists, scientists have been trying to decode such questions for years.
The Solar Probe Plus spacecraft, which will be the first to face extreme heat and radiation, will reach the orbit within four million miles of the surface of the Sun.
The data sent will improve forecasts of major space weather events that not only impact life on Earth, but also man-made satellites and astronauts in Space.
What NASA says about the Solar Probe Plus spacecraft:
The surface temperature of the Sun is only about 5,500 degrees Celsius, however, the atmosphere above it is nearly two million degrees Celsius according to NASA. The Solar Probe Plus probe will also try to find out what makes the atmosphere of Sun so hot.
“Placed in orbit within four million miles of the sun’s surface, and facing heat and radiation unlike any spacecraft in history, the spacecraft will explore the sun’s outer atmosphere and make critical observations that will answer decades-old questions about the physics of how stars work,” said NASA.
“The resulting data will improve forecasts of major space weather events that impact life on Earth, as well as satellites and astronauts in space.”
NASA’s mission 2022:
NASA’s robotic spacecraft to a unique metal asteroid ‘Psyche’ will now be launched in 2022, a year ahead of the original schedule. Psyche is an asteroid orbiting the Sun between Mars and Jupiter, made almost entirely of nickel-iron metal.
This spacecraft is part of NASA’s discovery programme which is a series of lower-cost, highly focused robotic space missions that are exploring the solar system.