Business Standard

All you need to know about Aditya L-1, Isro's mission to study the Sun

Isro's head S Somanath said that the Aditya-L1 mission, which is all about studying the Sun, is all set to begin its voyage next on September 2

Aditya L-1 mission, Aditya L-1 news, Isro's sun mission

Nandini Singh New Delhi

Listen to This Article

Just a day after the Chandrayaan-3 successfully soft landed on the Moon, the Indian Space Research Organisation (Isro) is now gearing up for its next big adventure – the Aditya-L1 mission.

Isro's head, S Somanath, revealed that the Aditya-L1 mission, which is all about studying the Sun, is all set to begin its voyage on September 2.

"You can't even imagine the level of excitement here in India for this mission. I want to extend my thanks to everyone in the country. This mission is dedicated to all of you," Somanath said.

He further emphasised how vital the Chandrayaan-3 landing was and also highlighted that the Aditya-L1 mission is what's coming up next.

"Aditya-L1 is ready to be launched and will be launched in the first week of September," the Isro chief said. 

"It will take many days to reach its designated spot, the L1 point," it added.

Objectives of the solar mission Aditya-L1 

The Aditya-L1 mission is India's bold step to explore the Sun, a celestial object that has fascinated scientists and space enthusiasts for centuries. Isro has put a lot of thought and effort into planning this mission, and it's now entering the final stages of getting everything together.

Assuring that everything is going according to the plan, Somanath stated, "We're right on track. It's going to take around 120 days to reach its destination, which is roughly 1.5 million kilometres away from Earth." 

This incredible journey will position the Aditya-L1 spacecraft in an elliptical orbit, giving it the perfect vantage point to closely study the Sun, keep an eye on solar activities, and enhance our knowledge about the star that's crucial for life on our planet.

The mission has much potential for solar science, as it will provide scientists with crucial information about things like solar flares, magnetic fields, and even the Sun's outermost layer, called the corona. This kind of information is absolutely vital for predicting space weather, which can affect things like telecommunications, GPS systems, and even power grids here on Earth.

Aditya-L1's payload

The satellite comes equipped with seven different tools, each of which is meant to probe different layers of the Sun, from the photosphere and chromosphere to the outer corona. These tools will rely on sensors to detect electromagnetic particles and magnetic fields.

Out of these payloads, four will be positioned at L1 to directly observe the Sun, while the other three will conduct on-the-spot analyses of particles and fields. This part of the project has the potential to provide vital insights into how solar activities move through space between planets.

The Aditya-L1 will be carrying the following instruments:

1. Visible Emission Line Coronagraph (VELC)

This tool will explore the Sun's corona through both imaging and spectroscopy. It will also focus on studying phenomena like coronal mass ejections.

2. Solar Ultraviolet Imaging Telescope (SUIT)

SUIT will capture images of the photosphere and chromosphere using several imaging techniques. It will also measure changes in solar irradiance.

3. Solar Low Energy X-ray Spectrometer (SoLEXS) and High Energy L1 Orbiting X-ray Spectrometer (HEL1OS)

These devices will analyse the X-ray flares emitted by the Sun across a broad range of X-ray energies, from soft to hard X-rays.

4. Aditya Solar Wind Particle Experiment (ASPEX) and Plasma Analyser Package For Aditya (PAPA)

These instruments will study electrons and protons in the solar wind, and the energetic ions within it.

In addition, the mission will also employ Advanced Tri-axial High-Resolution Digital Magnetometers to study the interplanetary magnetic field at the L1 point.

Isro further stated that the tools on the Aditya-L1 are expected to offer vital information for understanding various solar phenomena like coronal heating, coronal mass ejections, pre-flare and flare activities, space weather dynamics, and how particles and fields propagate.

Gaganyaan work in progress

The Isro chief also shared an update about Gaganyaan, the cornerstone for India's manned space missions. 

"Gaganyaan is still a work in progress. We will do a mission possibly by the end of September or October to demonstrate the crew module and crew escape capability which will be followed by many test missions until we do the first manned mission possibly by 2025," he said.

(With agency input)

Don't miss the most important news and views of the day. Get them on our Telegram channel

First Published: Aug 28 2023 | 4:51 PM IST

Explore News