Journey to the Sun
In the next twelve months, two of the most ambitious space missions ever attempted will blast off from Earth on a journey to the Sun. NASA’s Parker Solar Probe and the European Space Agency's Solar Orbiter will fly closer to the Sun than any craft before, withstanding searing temperatures and fearsome blasts of radiation. Hunkered down behind their heat shields, they will orbit the Sun, measuring, sampling and photographing in an attempt to unravel some of the deep outstanding mysteries about our nearest star. In this talk, physicist and curator Dr Harry Cliff will take us on a journey to the Sun, exploring how we found out how it shines, how solar storms pose an existential threat to our technological world and what these two daring missions may reveal about the star that gives us life.
Who is Dr. Harry Cliff?
Dr Harry Cliff is a particle physicist from the University of Cambridge who works on the Large Hadron Collider, the world’s largest scientific experiment, at CERN near Geneva. Harry’s studies extremely rare particle decays in collisions produced at the LHCb experiment in an attempt to answer questions about the origins and composition of the universe and the laws of nature. Harry is also Fellow of Modern Science at the Science Museum in London, where he co-curated the critically acclaimed «Collider” exhibition, and is currently leading the development a new exhibition telling the story of humankind’s changing relationship with the Sun.