Explores a new record for the fastest thing ever created by humans: science alert

Hurling through the solar system at an astonishing speed of 635,266 kilometers (394,736 miles) per hour, NASA’s Parker Solar Probe has broken the record for the fastest man-made object ever created.

The event on September 27 marked the turning point for Mission 17Th As it orbits the Sun it collects data on the hot wind of charged particles and violent magnetism surrounding our nearest star, and returns three years later. Its previous record 586,863.4 kilometers (364,660 miles) per hour.

At this speed, it is possible for an airplane to circle our planet about 15 times in an hour, or zoom from New York to Los Angeles in 20 seconds.

Not only is this a record speed, it’s also a record close to the Sun – just 7.26 million kilometers from the radiant sea of ​​plasma that we think of as the star’s surface.

Since the Sun is less than 1.4 million kilometers across, this is like standing several respectable speeds away from a blazing fire. Close enough to smell the smoke but not close enough to singe your nose hairs.

Achieving such incredible feats is not the result of powerful impulses (at least, not entirely), but the perfect timing of a game of cosmic mini-golf.

Parker Solar Probe’s 17th orbit brought the spacecraft within 7.3 million kilometers of the Sun. (NASA/Johns Hopkins APL/Steve Gribben)

To get to the Parker Solar Probe’s operational location, it must slip in and out of the Sun’s corona. Unfortunately, we are standing on a mobile launch pad hurtling through space at tens of thousands of kilometers per hour.

NASA used a Beef Rocket Line up the shot, launch their heat-shielded ball into the green of the sky at a speed that helps cancel Earth’s spin and roll down the throat of the solar system.

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Calculating the time of the probe’s trajectory with Venus’s crawling path uses the planet’s gravity. Slows down exploration Just enough to circle the drain on a slow-low spin.

After a total of 24 orbits, the Parker Solar Probe should finally tip over the rim and give the space agency a hole-in-one; But not before collecting heaps of data to help better model the Sun’s behavior.

With seven rounds to go, we’ll no doubt see these records shattered again, each a reminder of what can be achieved with a bit of physics and a whole lot of passion.

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