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Last Post 22 Mar 2018 04:29 PM by  Christina Cohen
Parker Solar Probe: Speed of Probe
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Carole Holmberg Museum of York County (SC)


22 Mar 2018 12:57 PM
    from webinar:

    From Carole Holmberg Museum of York County, Rock Hill, SC : Why is it (Parker Solar Probe) going so fast? How will it slow down?

    Christina Cohen

    Basic Member

    Basic Member

    22 Mar 2018 04:29 PM

    The Earth itself is going pretty fast around the Sun (about 67,000 mph), so just by starting on the Earth Solar Probe is going pretty fast.

    There is a law of physics known as one of Kepler's laws of planetary motion that tells us that when an orbit of a body (like Solar Probe) is not a perfect circle, but rather an ellipse (as Solar Probe's orbit will be), the speed is not constant around the orbit. Thus Solar Probe will speed up as it moves closer to the Sun and then slow back down as it moves back towards Earth's orbit.