Animations


Retracting Main Solar Arrays Video Thumbnail

Fairing Separation

Solar Probe Plus jettisons its protective fairing shortly after launch.

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Retracting Main Solar Arrays Video Thumbnail

Third Stage Firing

Separated from its launch vehicle, Solar Probe Plus gets a boost from a solid-fuel third-stage “kick” motor.

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Leaving Earth Video Thumbnail

Goodbye Earth!

Solar Probe Plus, having separated from its launch vehicle and booster rocket, heads for the inner solar system and an unprecedented study of the Sun.

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Retracting Main Solar Arrays Video Thumbnail

Power Up

Solar Probe Plus deploys its solar arrays and begins drawing power for its trip toward the Sun.

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Venus Flyby Video Thumbnail

An Assist from Venus

Solar Probe Plus, in cruise configuration, soars past Venus during one of the seven gravity assists that sends it closer to the Sun.

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Retracting Main Solar Arrays Video Thumbnail

Getting Warmer

Solar Probe Plus folds its solar panels into the shadows of its protective solar shade, leaving just enough of the specially angled panels in sunlight to provide power closer to the Sun.

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