NASA will send a probe to study sun in 2018

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“I’m certainly greatly honored to be associated with such a heroic scientific space mission,” Parker said during a press conference at the University of Chicago today. The $1.5 billion mission s scheduled to soar to solar orbit atop a United Launch Alliance Delta IV Heavy rocket from Kennedy Space Center in Florida on July 31, 2018. Over the course of the next seven years, the spacecraft will perform 24 close flybys of the sun. It will approach at just 3.9 million miles (6.2 million kilometers) of the solar surface. The 10-foot-long (3 meters) Parker Solar Probe is expected to experience temperatures of up to 2,500 degrees Fahrenheit (1,370 degrees Celsius) and solar radiation intensities 475 times greater than we’re used to on Earth. The probe will be outfitted with a 7.5-foot-wide (2.3 m), 4.5-inch-thick (11.4 centimeters) heat shield made of advanced carbon-composite material, which will allow its four science instruments to operate at about room temperature. The probe will measure the sun’s electric and magnetic fields, will take photograph of the solar structure and will study the solar wind.The craft will also carry telescopes with which scientists hope to gain unprecedented close-up images of the Sun. The interest to obtain some answers about sun, based on direct observation is justified because humans need to make predictions. One recent study by the National Academy of Sciences estimated that, without advance warning, a huge solar event could cause $2 trillion in damage in the U.S. alone, and the Eastern Seaboard of the U.S. could be without power for a year, and this is only one fact.

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