Aditya –ISRO’s Solar Mission
Science & Technology
8th Jan, 2020
Prime Minister Narendra Modi recently highlighted in Mann Ki Baat program that ISRO is planning to launch its first Sun Mission Aditya L1. It is an ambitious plan of Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO).
- Aditya - L1 is the first Indian mission to study the outermost region of the sun, called corona.
- Aditya-1 to Aditya L-1 Mission:The concept of the Aditya-1 mission was to carry 400 kg of the payload called Visible Emission Line Coronagraph (VELC). Earlier, this mission was planned to launch in an 800 km low earth orbit. But, it was found that a satellite placed in a halo orbit around the Lagrangian Point 1 (L1) can give a big advantage of viewing Sun. Thus, this mission was renamed Aditya L-1 Mission.
- The temperature of the solar corona goes beyond million degrees. From the ground, the corona could be seen only during total solar eclipses mainly due to the bright solar disc and the scattering of the sunlight by the earth’s atmosphere. To mask the bright solar disc and study the corona, one has to go beyond the atmosphere.
- The major scientific objectives of Aditya-1 mission are to achieve a fundamental understanding of the physical processes that heat the solar corona; accelerate the solar wind; and produce coronal mass ejections (CMEs).
Features of Aditya L1
- There will be six scientific payloads on this 400 kg satellite.
- It will be placed in the halo orbit near the L1 point of the Sun-Earth system.
- The Aditya-L1 can now provide observations of the Sun's photosphere (soft and solid X-rays), chromosphere (UV) and the corona (visual and NIR) along with additional experiments.
- The 20 cm coronagraph, having a field of view of corona from 1.05 R to 3.0 R, will use an off axis parabolic mirror. The payload will have three CCD detectors system with a capability of simultaneous imaging in 6374 Å, 5303 Å and in 5800 Å for continuum/broadband.
6 Payloads of Aditya L-1 Mission
- Visible Emission Line Coronagraph (VELC):It will help to study the origin of Coronal Mass Ejection, diagnostic parameters of solar corona and its dynamics.
- Solar Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (SUIT):This payload will help to find out the image of spatially resolved Solar Photosphere as well as to measure solar irradiance variations.
- Plasma Analyser Package for Aditya (PAPA):It has been designed to understand the energy distribution and composition of solar winds.
- Solar Low Energy X-ray Spectrometer (SoLEXS):It will monitor X-ray flares of Solar system to study the heating system of solar corona.
- High Energy L1 Orbiting X-ray Spectrometer (HEL1OS):It will help to observe the various dynamic actions happen in solar corona to provide an estimate of solar energy.
- Magnetometer:This payload will monitor and measure the magnitude of the nature of Interplanetary Magnetic Field in the solar system.
ISRO’s big plans for 2020 are not just Chandrayaan 3 and Gaganyaan but Aditya mission too which will place India in a distinguished class of nations in space research and technology.