At yesterday's meeting of the American Geophysical Union, NASA scientists reported that the space probe they sent had reached the upper layers of the Sun's atmosphere, the agency's website reported.
This happened back in April: the Parker Solar Probe probe actually flew through the solar corona during its eighth encounter with the luminary. After that, it took several months to get the data back, and several more to get confirmation.
The probe was launched in 2018. When he first crossed the corona - the upper, thinnest and hottest layer of the Sun's atmosphere, he was at a distance of 13 million kilometers from the center of the sun. The data shows that the Parker Solar Probe has entered and exited the crown at least three times, with a smooth transition each time. The crown turned out to be more dusty than expected, the researchers said. Future conversions will help scientists better understand the origin of the solar wind, how it heats up and accelerates in space.
Preliminary data suggests that the probe also plunged into the corona during its ninth close encounter in August, and made its 10th close encounter last month. Parker Solar Probe is slated to continue to converge further, with its deepest dive taking place in 2025.