Parker Solar Probe

  • After coming within a record 15 million miles (24 million km) of the Sun's surface on November 5, 2018. NASA's Parker Solar Probe has completed its first orbit and is heading back for another fiery close encounter.
  • Mission control at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Lab confirmed receiving the Parker Solar Probe's status beacon on November 7 after it came within 15 million miles (24 million km) of the Sun's surface on November 5.
  • The Parker Solar Probe has only been in space about two and a half months, and it's already breaking records. On October 29, 2018 at 1:04 pm EDT, the unmanned spacecraft came within 26.55 million mi (42.73 million km) of the Sun's surface – closer than any other man-made object.
  • The Parker Solar Probe took time off on the way to its historic rendezvous with the Sun to look back and take a snapshot of home. Taken by at a distance of 27 million miles, the image shows the Earth as a lopsided ball with an elongated lens flare caused by Earthlight at the bottom of the panel.
  • ​​Following a successful launch last month that set it on a path to rendezvous with the Sun, NASA’s Solar Parker Probe has fired up its scientific instruments for the first time, demonstrating that all is in working order as it hurtles away from Earth.
  • ​The origin’s of NASA’s Parker Solar Probe mission can be traced back to a paper published 60 years ago by astrophysicist Eugene Parker, describing high speed matter emanating from the center of our solar system. Today the spacecraft carrying his name lifted off and is now en route to the Sun.