NASA today launched a solar probe which will be the closest man-made object to ever approach the sun.
Launched from Cape Canaveral, Florida, after a last-minute technical problem caused a delay, the Parker Solar Probe is now on its way to the Sun, which it should reach in around three months’ time.
It will then spend the next seven years making 24 loops around the Sun to study its atmosphere, using Venus to slingshot it back into orbit. Eventually, it will run out of fuel and turned into the solar wind that it was studying.
Named after Eugene Parker, the first person to describe solar wind, the solar probe is the fastest-moving artificial object in human history. It will travel at a speed of 690,000 kilometers per hour as it whips around the Sun.
The Parker Probe cost an estimated 1.5 billion dollars which means we’ve launched a hunk of metal that will likely melt as it approaches the star at the center of our universe. Hope those calculations are correct you NASA boys (or girls)…