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  5. The Parker probe completes the first phase of its journey to the Sun breaking records and “gives us

The Parker probe completes the first phase of its journey to the Sun breaking records and “gives us



The Parker probe completes the first phase of its journey to the Sun breaking records and “gives us


We already have “touched” Mars, Jupiter more than observed, and our eyes have already peered at the outskirts of the solar system. In this way, what could not resist our thirst for a cosmic visit was the Sun, and on its way to it Parker probe tells us that everything is fine.

There is still time for him to reach his fiery goal (a few million kilometers), but for now has already broken record in terms of the closest distance to the sun that one of our vehicles has achieved. This without having suffered major mishaps, when it already passes through an area of ​​extremely high temperatures and a high rate of radiation.

Parker tells us “all good”

This is told by NASA in the latest update on the mission, informing that Parker is about 15 million miles from Astro Rey and that he is still alive and well. The probe has a specially designed heat shield for withstand temperatures of more than 1,300 degrees Celsius, and at the moment it is being effective.

Thus, it still has a stretch to the final distance, which is about six million kilometers from the Sun (remaining about 150 million kilometers from our planet). But it has already made the first pass through the star about three months after its launch, as we discussed at the time, thus breaking the record that it held for being the human-created object that came closest to the Sun and that until last October 29 it had the Helios B probe (in 1976).

Thomas Zurbuchen of NASA comments that the Parker probe was designed to “take care of itself and its cargo on its approach, without control from Earth”, and that now they knew that it was proving to be a successful mission. The update was received by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory on November 7 at 4:46 pm EST (10:45 p.m. in the peninsula, 9:45 p.m. in the Canary Islands, 3:45 p.m. in Mexico and 4:45 p.m. in Colombia), in a report sent in its first perihelion.

May the shield be with you, Parker

There is also another record that Parker has already broken in this first phase of his journey: reaching 342,790 kilometers per hour (213,000 miles / hour), the fastest speed reached by a space vehicle according to the US space agency. Record that he expects to beat again as its orbit approaches the Sun.

It remains therefore to continue waiting for updates on its status, hoping that its shield will serve it as planned and that on its trip it will have more luck than Opportunity, the Mars rover of which there is no news since a strong storm devastated the area of ​​the planet. in which he was. So far Parker has held up well to the stakes of radiation being “this close” to the Sun, we’ll see if the next report is still favorable.