Blazing hot temperatures. Sizzling space dust and subatomic particles flowing at supersonic speeds. Solar storms ejecting billions of tons of material as fast as 1,240 miles per second.
These are just a few of the insane conditions NASA’s Solar Probe Plus spacecraft will face as it plunges into the sun’s corona, or outer atmosphere, moving as fast as 450,000 miles per hour – venturing where no manmade object has been before, moving multitudes faster than any manmade object has ever gone.
The Solar Probe Plus will brave the sun’s insanity to take the first in situ, or in place, measurements of the conditions inside the corona to find out what makes it so hot – 200 times hotter than the surface of the sun. It will also investigate how solar winds (streams of charged and energetic particles flowing from the sun) are accelerated.
Here’s a breakdown of the intense environment Solar Probe Plus will have to endure on its journey to understand the sun.
- Dragan Radovanovic/Business Insider