Friday, September 1, 2023

India is getting ready to send its first expedition to the sun with the Aditya-L1 spacecraft

Just a few days after India made history by being the first country to land on the moon near the moon's south pole, the country is getting ready to launch its very first observation mission to the Sun.

On Saturday at 11:50 India time, or 06:20 GMT, the Aditya-L1 rocket is scheduled to take off from the launch pad at Sriharikota.

It will be situated one percent of the way between the Earth and the Sun, which corresponds to a distance of 1.5 million kilometers (93 million miles).

According to the Indian space agency, the journey will take approximately four months to complete.

The Hindu god of the sun, Surya, who is also known by his other name, Aditya, was honored with the naming of India's first space-based mission, which was designed to investigate the largest object in our solar system.

And the abbreviation L1 refers to the Lagrange point 1, which is the precise location between the sun and earth where the Indian spacecraft will be positioned.

A Lagrange point is a location, as described by the European Space Agency (ESA), in which the gravitational influences of two big objects, such as the Sun and the Earth, cancel each other out, making it possible for a spacecraft to "hover" in that region.

After Aditya-L1 has arrived at this so-called "parking spot," it will be able to orbit the Sun at the same rate that Earth does. Because of this, the satellite will have a very low need for fuel in order to function.

A momentous landing was made by India close to the moon's south pole.
The lunar rover from India successfully completed its first steps on the moon.
Where has India's rover been going on the moon, and what has it been doing there?
According to the Indian Space Research Organization (Isro), once the spacecraft has lifted off, it will complete a number of orbits around the Earth before it is sent on its way to L1.

Aditya-L1 will be able to conduct research and keep a continual eye on the Sun from its perch in this strategic location, even when the Sun is obscured by other celestial bodies, such as during an eclipse.

According to sources in the Indian press, the total cost of the mission is estimated to be 3.78 billion rupees, which is equivalent to $46 million or £36 million. The Indian Space Research Organization (Isro) has not disclosed the cost of the mission.

According to Isro, the orbiter is equipped with seven scientific instruments that will watch and analyze the solar corona, which is the layer at the very top; the photosphere, which is the surface of the Sun or the part that is visible from Earth; and the chromosphere, which is a very thin layer of plasma that lies between the photosphere and the corona.

The research will provide scientists with a better understanding of solar activity, such as solar wind and solar flares, as well as their effect on the weather on Earth and in the vicinity of space in real time.

According to Mylswamy Annadurai, a former Isro scientist, the Sun constantly influences the weather on Earth through radiation, heat, the passage of particles, and magnetic fields. At the same time, it has an effect on the weather in space, according to him.

"The efficiency with which the satellites perform their functions is affected by the weather in space." Solar winds or storms have the potential to disrupt the electronic components of satellites and even cause power networks to fail. However, there are certain holes in our understanding of space weather, as Mr. Annadurai stated to the BBC.

More than 50 satellites are now in orbit over India. These satellites supply the nation with a variety of important services, such as communication linkages, data on the weather, and the ability to anticipate pest infestations, droughts, and oncoming natural disasters. The United Nations Office for Outer Space Affairs (UNOOSA) estimates that there are roughly 10,290 satellites still in orbit around the earth, with nearly 7,800 of them being operational at any given time.

According to Mr. Annadurai, Aditya will assist us in gaining a deeper understanding of the star on which our lives depend and even provide us with a warning about it.

"Knowing the activities of the Sun, such as solar wind or a solar eruption, a couple of days ahead of time will help us move our satellites out of harm's way," said the scientist. Because of this, the amount of time that our satellites spend in space will be extended.

He goes on to say that the mission will, above all else, assist in enhancing our scientific understanding of the Sun, which is a star that is 4.5 billion years old and is responsible for keeping our solar system together.

It has only been a few days since India successfully landed the world's first-ever probe near the lunar south pole, and now the country is turning its attention to the sun.

India is now the only nation in the world to have successfully completed a soft landing on the moon, joining the United States of America, China, and the erstwhile Soviet Union as the only other countries to have done so.

The Solar Orbiter journey to the Sun has begun, and the probe will make a historic transit through the Sun's atmosphere.
If the Aditya-L1 mission is successful, India will become one of a limited handful of nations that are already conducting research on the sun.

In 1981, Japan was the first country to send a mission to the Sun in order to research solar flares. Since the 1990s, the United States National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the European Space Agency (ESA) have been monitoring the Sun.

Solar Orbiter was jointly launched by NASA and the European Space Agency in February of 2020. Its mission is to conduct in-depth research on the Sun by observing it from a close range and collecting data that, according to scientists, will shed light on the factors that influence the Sun's dynamic behavior.

And in 2021, NASA's newest spacecraft, the Parker Solar Probe, made history by becoming the first spacecraft to fly through the corona, which is the name for the sun's outer atmosphere.

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