Parker Solar Probe: Detected radio signal from Venus

The NASA Spacecraft Parker Solar Probe has discovered a natural radio signal from Venus. These signals were detected when the space probe flew over the upper atmosphere of Venus.

What did Parker Solar Probe find?

The Parker Solar probe has measured the Venusian atmosphere. This is the first direct measurement of the planet’s atmosphere in thirty years. According to the findings of Parker Solar Probe, just like the earth, planet Venus also has an electrically charged layer of gas in its upper atmosphere called the ionosphere. The radio signal was picked up by the probe from a sea of charged particles in this layer.

Also, the space probe has confirmed that the upper Venus atmosphere undergoes changes over a solar cycle.

Venus and Earth

Both the Earth and Venus are of similar size and structure and are called twin planets. However, unlike the Earth, Venus lacks magnetic field and its surface is hot enough to melt lead.

Parker Solar Probe

It was launched in 2018 to study about the outer corona of the sun. It is to reach to 9.86 solar radii, that is, 6.9 million kilometres from the centre of the sun by 2025. The three main objectives of Parker Solar Probe are as follows:

  • To trace the flow of energy that heats and accelerates the solar wind and solar corona
  • To determine the structure of magnetic field and plasma at the sources of solar winds
  • To explore about the mechanisms that accelerate energetic particles

Solar Cycle

The sun is a huge ball of electrically charged hot gas. This gas moves generating powerful magnetic field. The magnetic field of the sun undergoes changes every eleven years. This is called solar cycle. Every eleven years, the magnetic field of the sun flips. That is, the north and south poles of the sun switch places.

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