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Submission + - Europe Sending a Probe to the Sun (bbc.co.uk) 2

Mindflux0 writes: The European Union is going forward with the proposed Solar Orbiter, a space probe designed to study the sun. The probe will orbit closer to the sun than any other man-made object at a sizzling 42 million km. It's planned to launch in 2017 for close to a billion euros.
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Europe Sending a Probe to the Sun

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  • European Space Agency is going forward with the mission.

    There's major territorial overlap when it comes to the three entities, but it's important to recognize them as distinct. Heck, Canada is a way more active, much fuller ESA ~member than my place (Europe, EU, European Cooperating State with ESA)
  • That's 0.281 AU (Astronomical Unit = Earth/Sun distance). The solar irradiance (insolation) there is about 17.3 kW/m^2, or (1/0.281)^2 = 12.66 times that at the top of Earth's atmosphere (approx 1366 W/m^2). Toasty!

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