Space exploration A sonar rattles through the Sun’s crown – “Parker touched the Sun, it’s a major achievement”

The Parker spacecraft grabbed information about the magnetism and solar wind of our near star. The sonar will soon be flying deeper than the surface layers of the Sun.

Human The device was literally praised for the first time in the Sun.

The U.S. space agency Nasa says its sonar Parker flew through the outermost part of the Sun’s atmosphere on April 28, 2021. The outermost part is called the crown.

Parker traveled five hours less than 19 rays from the surface of the star.

Parker the properties of the corona were also measured during the passage. Now we know a little more about the Sun again.

Korona is very hot, but Parker survived the trip without injury. The sonar equipment is well protected from heat.

The journey inside the corona yielded also compiled a video. It appears as part of a bigger video.

“Parker touched the Sun. It is a significant achievement, ”said the astrophysicist Thomas Zurbuchen online service for Science Alert. He is the director of Nasa’s science flights.

According to him, the information obtained also helps to understand the other stars of the universe.

Nasa said the course of the flight at the Fall Meeting of the American Geophysical Society in New Orleans.

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A Sounder Parker was sent on a trip in August 2018. Its main object was to study the Sun and its corona. This outer layer is very hot.

Parker has visited the Sun eight times already, but its journey continues and intensifies.

Parker should pass the Sun up close a total of 26 times during a seven-year flight. The gravity of Venus, a neighboring planet on Earth, brings the sonar’s rotation closer and closer to its target.

In the corona, Parker photographed particles and plasma currents ejected from the Sun.

Parker measured, for example, the variations in the Sun’s magnetic field in the corona during an April flight. It also took samples of the Sun’s particles.

Previous estimates of the composition of the corona were based on observations obtained from outside the corona.

Parker now has data on the corona’s magnetic field and solar wind. It also grabbed images and a video compilation from the middle of the particles, where hot particles are rampant.

This is how Parker got information about the parts of the outer edge of the Sun that stand out from the Earth even with the naked eye during a complete eclipse. In the eclipse, the corona glows on the edge of the black circle of the eclipse.

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In the sun there is in fact no solid surface. Instead, one of the boundaries of the Sun’s surface area has been considered the so-called

Alfvén’s critical surface


At that limit, the Sun’s gravity and the Sun’s magnetic fields are starting to be too weak to get the Sun’s plasma in control.

Above this limit rises the solar wind, which is a stream of particles emanating from the corona. It thanks to the rest of the solar system.

What scientists say is the surface of the Sun is made up of rotating convection cells and plasma. Closer to the surface of the Sun is the photosphere of the Sun.

One Parker’s goal is to learn more about Alfvén’s surface and exactly what its surface shape is.

The critical surface of Alfvén is estimated to be 10–20 rays from the center of the Sun. Parker lowered his orbit as far down as 18.4 in the sun.

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It turned out that Parker had indeed dived into and out of the atmosphere several times.

Interestingly, the sonar appeared to encounter the magnetic conditions of the corona only occasionally. This suggests that the critical surface of the Alfvén of the Sun is wrinkled.

The conditions a little lower were calmer than those higher in the corona. The particles did not hit the sonar as chaotically.

This proved that the critical surface of Alfvén is not flat, but has hills and valleys.

Parker will pass the Sun next time in January. Then it passes through the corona again.

At its closest, it orbits the Sun perhaps just under nine times its radius. This will give scientists more information about, for example, how the solar wind is created.

A study on the flight to the Sun was published Physical Review Letters, and is also published in The Astrophysical Journal.

Read more: European-Japanese space probe BepiColombo sends first close-ups of Mercury

Read more: Water vapor was found in the atmosphere of Jupiter’s large moon Ganymedes – there may be more water there than in the Earth’s seas combined.

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