NASA’s Parker Solar Probe, the spaceship in charge of approaching the Sun at an incredibly close distance, has efficiently managed to send back to Earth data on the first two solar nearings.
The American space agency revealed the mission turning point on August the 1st, detailing the fact that the Parker Solar Probe’s last downlink of 22 GB of data was sent on May the 6th. The downlink included about 50 percent more data than the team has thought they will receive at this particular time, NASA said.
The Parker Solar Probe has completed two passes by the Sun, both having the task to collect data on the star to help answer questions and add to our understanding of the Sun. The probe’s downlink of the data occurred a month after the completion of its second solar pass by the celestial body.
As per NASA, the spaceship’s telecommunications system is functioning better than astronomers had thought it would, resulting in a large amount of data sent back to the central team on Earth. Therefore, scientists had tasked Parker Solar Probe to collect and eventually send back more information on its second pass by the Sun.
The research team is anticipating another 25 GB of that additional data on the second flyby by August the 15th. NASA wants to make the data collected from these two first tasks public sometime this year, even though it doesn’t reveal an assessed date for the release. Before the information goes public, however, the third close Sun approach will happen, scheduled to start on August the 27th.
NASA announced that the probe’s third trajectory would take place on September the 1st, collecting even more high-score information on the Sun. A total of four toolsets on Parker Solar Probe are collecting the data, including information on fields, particles, and waves referring to the star’s corona and the surrounding settings.