In a major milestone for India’s space exploration, the Indian Space Research Organization (Isro) has successfully launched the first solar observation mission dedicated to studying the Sun, Aditya-L1. , on Saturday.
The launch took place at 11:50 am IST from the Satish Dhawan Space Center in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh. The spacecraft separated from the rocket’s fourth stage nearly an hour after launch, making it one of the Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle’s longest missions.
Aditya-L1 is India’s pioneering mission to study the Sun and its dynamic activities. The spacecraft will travel about 1.5 million kilometers from Earth to position itself in a halo orbit around the Lagrange point 1 (L1) of the Sun-Earth system.
This strategic location will allow the satellite to continuously observe the Sun without any eclipses, providing real-time data on solar activities and their effects on space weather.
The mission carried seven scientific instruments designed to study different aspects of the Sun’s behavior. These include the Visible Emission Line Coronagraph (VELC), the Solar Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (SUIT), the Aditya Solar Wind Particle Experiment (ASPEX), and the Aditya Plasma Analysis Package (PAPA).
These instruments will provide multi-wavelength observations of the Sun’s atmosphere, from the photosphere to the corona, allowing scientists to track the flow of energy and matter between different layers.
One of the main goals of the Aditya-L1 mission is to unravel the mystery of the Sun’s corona, which is significantly hotter than its surface. By closely examining the corona’s activity, scientists hope to understand the mechanism that heats this outer layer of the Sun.
Additionally, this mission aims to provide insights into the processes that lead to solar storms, coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and solar energetic particle events (SEPs).
These insights can contribute to more accurate forecasting of space weather events and their potential impact on communications systems, satellites and power grids.
The mission also seeks to understand how the Sun’s radiation affects Earth’s climate over long periods of time.
Observations of near-ultraviolet solar radiation and its effects on Earth’s upper atmosphere can contribute to understanding how solar variability can influence Earth’s climate patterns such as how.
The successful launch of Aditya-L1 marks a significant step forward in India’s space exploration efforts.
The mission is expected to provide groundbreaking discoveries and insights in the field of solar and eclipse physics, enhancing our understanding of the Sun’s behavior and its interactions. it with the Earth and space environment.
Sibu Kumar Tripathi
September 2, 2023