After Moon, ISRO to study the Sun with Aditya-L1 mission

DailyBiteAug 24, 2023 | 12:38

After Moon, ISRO to study the Sun with Aditya-L1 mission

The satellite for the Aditya-L1 mission to study the sun is getting ready for the launch at the ISRO center in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh. Photo: Twitter/@isro

India etched its name in history on August 23, 2023, as its spacecraft, Chandrayaan-3, successfully executed a soft landing on the Moon after a failed attempt four years prior. The jubilation of the people knew no bounds as India joined the ranks of global powers – the US, China, and the Soviet Union – by finally achieving a lunar landing.

As of an update from the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) just an hour ago, the rover from Chandrayaan-3 descended from the lander and embarked on a lunar stroll.


The space agency turned to X (formerly known as Twitter) and stated, "The CH-3 descended from the lander, and India took its first steps on the Moon."

Shortly after the landing, Prime Minister Narendra Modi extended his congratulations to ISRO and the entire nation for reaching this significant milestone. He also revealed that India's upcoming missions involve studying the Sun and subsequently Venus (Shukra).

He affirmed, "To observe and study the Sun, ISRO will be launching the Aditya L1 mission, and after that, our focus will shift to Venus (Shukra)."

What is the Aditya L1 mission?

Aditya L1 marks India's maiden space-based mission aimed at studying the Sun. Although the mission's launch date remains undisclosed, ISRO has confirmed that the satellite has arrived at the Satish Dhawan Space Center (SDSC) in Sriharikota, Andhra Pradesh, where it will undergo integration with the PSLV launch vehicle.

S Somanath, the chief of ISRO, stated during a conversation with reporters following Chandrayaan-3's landing, "ISRO's next mission is the Aditya L1 mission, which is currently in preparation at Sriharikota."

Earlier this month, ISRO provided an update on the mission, revealing that the satellite, assembled at the U R Rao Satellite Centre (URSC) in Bengaluru, has now reached SDSC-SHAR in Sriharikota.


How will the spacecraft study the Sun?

As per the information presented on ISRO's official website, "The spacecraft will be positioned in a halo orbit around Lagrange point 1 (L1) of the Sun-Earth system, approximately 1.5 million km from Earth. Placing a satellite in a halo orbit around the L1 point offers the significant advantage of continuous observation of the Sun without any occultation or eclipses," as stated on ISRO's website.

It further explained that this unique positioning grants a substantial advantage in observing solar activities and their influence on space weather over time.

Equipped with seven payloads, the spacecraft will observe the photosphere, chromosphere, and the outermost layers of the Sun (the corona) using electromagnetic, particle, and magnetic field detectors. With its specialized vantage point at L1, four payloads will directly monitor the Sun, while the remaining three will conduct in-situ studies of particles and fields at Lagrange point L1, thereby contributing crucial scientific insights into the propagatory effects of solar dynamics within the interplanetary medium.

Photo: ISRO


Key objectives of the Aditya L1 mission include:


  • Analyzing dynamics in the solar upper atmosphere (chromosphere and corona)
  • Investigating chromospheric and coronal heating, the physics of partially ionized plasma, the initiation of coronal mass ejections, and solar flares.
  • Observing the in-situ particle and plasma environment
  • Understanding the physics behind the solar corona and its heating mechanism
  • Studying the development, dynamics, and origin of solar magnetic forces
  • Mapping magnetic field topology and measuring magnetic fields in the solar corona as drivers for space weather.
Last updated: August 25, 2023 | 16:20
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