NASA’s Parker Solar Probe has recently completed its 10th close approach to the Sun on Nov ’21, coming within 5.3 million miles (8.5 million kilometers) of the solar surface. It has completed this swing with an impressive and space record speed that will take under an hour to reach the moon from the Earth.
Parker Solar Probe is in the 10th of 24 planned, progressively closer orbits around the Sun. The spacecraft, built and operated at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland. It was launched on Aug 12, 2018.
The nearest approach, known as perihelion, occurred at 4:25 a.m. EST (8:25 UTC), with Parker Solar Probe moving 364,660 miles per hour (586,864 kilometers per hour). It is also a record distance traveled, and the event marked the halfway point in the mission’s 10th solar encounter. The mission began on Nov.16 and continues through Nov.26.
The spacecraft entered the encounter in healthy conditions, with all its systems operating normally.
Parker Solar Probe is scheduled to check back in with mission operators at the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland, on Nov 24.
The spacecraft will transmit science data from the encounter. This data will primarily cover the properties and structure of the solar wind and the dust environment near the Sun – back to Earth from Dec. 23-Jan. 9.