Exploring the Sun was once a dream, but not anymore.
International space agency, NASA has announced its mission to 'touch the Sun'. Though touching the Sun is still not possible, the mission is to get as close to the Sun as possible to explore the undefined secrets of the solar powerhouse.
NASA, on announcing this unmanned mission will be using a thick heat shield to protect the probe from deadly hot sun heat attacks. The probe moves more than 430,000 miles per hour (the equivalent of travelling from New York to Tokyo in lesser than a minute).
The probe will travel more than seven times closer to the surface than any previous craft has ever reached. This probe will be on a seven-year mission comprising 24 orbits, with one heat shield side facing the sun to protect the probe from its harmful heat.
Read more about the NASA's plan to explore the 'SUN'.
The craft that got nearest to the Sun was 'The Parker Space Probe', was named after Eugene Parker, one of the pioneers of solar science.
After the announcement Eugene Parker said, "I am extremely honoured to be associated with this heroic space mission".
The Parker Space Probe is so small that it could fit into a refrigerator but it's built to withstand temperatures of more than 2,000 degrees Fahrenheit, all the while maintaining room temperature inside the probe.
NASA is using a 4.5-inch thick heat shield to protect the probe's suite of instruments from the brutal heat.
The Parker Space Probe will go as near as 4 Million miles, which is called as Corona. Corona is the outer layer of the Sun, which is claimed to be hotter than the Sun's surface. The probe will record the activities from Corona.
The closest any spacecraft has ever reached to the Sun is Helios, which was launched back in 1976. Helios reached 27 Million miles near to the Sun.
Nicola Fox, the mission project scientist, says, "We have really come as far as we can with looking at things, and it's time to pay it a visit. You can see the sun is shining; you can see the birds are singing. But until you actually go out, you have no idea quite how hot it is out there or how windy it is or what the conditions are like."
This mission is scheduled to launch from Cape Canaveral next year and will make its first flight towards the Sun in November 2018.