NASA sets the controls for the heart of the sun

  09 August 2018    Read: 1632
NASA sets the controls for the heart of the sun

Barring any unforeseen circumstances, NASA is set to launch the Parker Space Probe – a vehicle designed to get closer to the sun than any previous human artefact – this weekend.

The probe, which is about the size of a small car, will exploit the gravity of Venus to gradually over seven years build an orbit that will take it to within six million kilometres of the sun’s surface – well inside the orbit of Mercury.

NASA intends to take advantage of a 45 minute launch window that begins at 3:45am US eastern daylight time this Saturday, August 11. That’s 12:45am on the US west coast, 7:45am in the UK, 1:15pm in India, and 5:45pm on the eastern seaboard of Australia.

The probe will be aboard a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket and launch from Cape Canaveral Air Force Station in Florida. Eager observers can watch the event live on NASA TV.

 

Cosmos magazine


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