Dr. Parker Watches Parker Solar Probe Liftoff

Dr. Eugene Parker (seated in the foreground), a pioneer in heliophysics and S. Chandrasekhar distinguished service professor emeritus for the Department of Astronomy and Astrophysics at the University of Chicago, watches the launch of NASA’s Parker Solar Probe. This is the first agency mission named for a living person. Standing behind Parker is Nicky Fox, Parker Solar Probe project scientist at Johns Hopkins Applied Physics Laboratory. The liftoff took place at 3:31 a.m. EDT on Sunday, Aug. 12, 2018. The spacecraft was built by the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Maryland. The mission will perform the closest-ever observations of a star when it travels through the Sun’s atmosphere, called the corona. The probe will rely on measurements and imaging to revolutionize our understanding of the corona and the Sun-Earth connection.