India to launch its first solar mission on Sept. 2

(Xinhua) 09:37, August 29, 2023

NEW DELHI, Aug. 28 (Xinhua) -- The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) on Monday formally announced that it would launch "Aditya-L1", the first space-based Indian observatory to study the Sun, on Sept. 2 from the Satish Dhawan Space Center located in Sriharikota of India's southern state of Andhra Pradesh, off the Bay of Bengal.

"The Aditya-L1 will be the first Indian space-based observatory-class solar mission to unlock the mysteries of the Sun," added the ISRO.

According to the Indian space agency, the mission's distance would be 1.5 million km from the Earth, which is about four times farther than the Moon, and the spacecraft would carry out an observatory-class solar probe.

The launch will be carried out at 11:50 a.m. Indian Standard Time, by ISRO's PSLV XL rocket.

"Initially the spacecraft will be placed in a Low Earth Orbit. Subsequently, the orbit will be made more elliptical and later the spacecraft will be launched towards the Lagrange point L1 by using onboard propulsion," said the ISRO in a statement.

It added, "As the spacecraft travels towards L1, it will exit the Earth's gravitational sphere of influence (SoI). After exit from SoI, the cruise phase will start and subsequently the spacecraft will be injected into a large halo orbit around L1. The total travel time from launch to L1 would take about four months for Aditya-L1."

The major science objective of the mission is to get a deeper understanding of the Sun in terms of coronal heating and solar wind acceleration, coupling and dynamics of the solar atmosphere, solar wind distribution and temperature anisotropy, and the initiation of coronal mass ejection, flares, and near-Earth space weather, said the ISRO's statement.

In a major feat, on Aug. 23 ISRO's Moon Mission-3, or Chandrayaan-3, successfully landed on the Moon's surface.

(Web editor: Zhang Kaiwei, Liang Jun)


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