You can send your name to the sun!
NASA is inviting the general public all over the globe to send in their names if they want to be featured on the US space agency's first solar probe this summer. The Parker solar probe will carry the names of everyone who registers on a microchip to the sun. Interestingly, popular Star Trek actor William Shatner's name will also be carried aboard the spacecraft.
Get the hottest ticket this summer to the sun
Get the hottest ticket of the summer: Send your name to touch Sun with @NASASun's Parker #SolarProbe spacecraft! Launching this summer, join us on humanity's 1st mission to "touch" a star, @WilliamShatner is! Details on adding your name to the microchip: https://t.co/o12bZD9BR2 pic.twitter.com/7qn1D1f2Oa— NASA (@NASA) March 6, 2018
How can you ensure your name gets on the list?
Go to the Parker solar probe's website and fill out a form with your name and e-mail ID. You will receive an e-mail with a confirmation link which you have to click on. And literally, that's it. You will receive a downloadable certificate as proof and acknowledgment of your successful submission. And it's all for free. The invitation is open until April 27.
The solar probe will launch in July
The Parker probe is scheduled to launch on July 31. The maiden mission to the sun aims to study how energy and heat move through the solar corona and explore what accelerates solar wind and solar energetic particles. The spacecraft will go as close as 4 million miles to the sun's surface and protect itself from the intense heat through a 4.5-inch-thick carbon-composite shield.
Here's how fast the Parker spacecraft is
At its closest approach to the sun, the Parker spacecraft will be going at approximately 4,30,000 mph. The size of a small car, it can travel from Washington DC to Tokyo in under a minute, NASA said. "Parker Solar Probe is the fastest, hottest- and to me, coolest- mission under the sun," project scientist Nicola Fox of the Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory said.
The solar probe is named after renowned astrophysicist Eugene Parker
The historic probe is named after renowned astrophysicist Eugene Parker, who in the 1950s, proposed several concepts about solar wind and how the sun gives off energy. This is the first time NASA has named a spacecraft in the honor of a living individual.