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EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY / SCIENCE PHOTO LIBRARY
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Illustration of the Solar Orbiter (left) and Parker Solar Probe (right) spacecrafts in orbit around the Sun. Solar Orbiter (SolO) is a European Space Agency (ESA) spacecraft launched on 10th February 2020. It will study the heliosphere, the bubble created in space by the solar wind. It will be the first satellite to provide close-up views of the Sun's polar regions. At its closest approach in its orbit, it will be around 42 million kilometres from the Sun. The Parker Solar probe is a joint project by NASA and Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory.It was launched on 12th August 2018 and will observe the Suns outer corona and investigate the Sun's electric and magnetic fields. The unmanned probe will approach to within 6 million kilometres of the solar surface (photosphere) using a solar shield for protection.
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