UPSC Exam Preparation: Topic of the Day – Aditya L1 Mission
In this article, you can read about ISRO’s ambitious solar mission, Aditya L1 Mission. This is important for UPSC science and technology segment.
Aditya L1 Mission is the first solar mission, to be launched by the Indian Space Research Organization (ISRO). India’s first dedicated scientific mission to study the sun is set to be launched in 2019. This solar mission aims at putting the satellite Aditya-L1, weighing 1500 kilograms into the halo orbit at a point in between the Sun and the Earth (known as Lagrangian point L1). The point is at a distance of nearly 1.5 million kilometers from the Earth. Lagrange point is the position in space where combined gravitational forces of two large bodies, such as Earth and sun or Earth and moon, roughly balance out each other. There are five such points in Sun – Earth system and are denoted as L1, L2, L3, L4 and L5.
- Aditya L1 is a joint mission of ISRO and Physicists of various institutions such as Inter University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics in Pune, Indian Institute of Astrophysics in Bengaluru and Tata Institute of Fundamental Research in Mumbai.
- It is India’s third-biggest extraterrestrial outing after Moon and Mars.
- The mission comprises of 7 instruments in all, focusing on Sun’s outer Corona, Solar winds and Sun’s magnetic field.
- The satellite will be programmed to orbit L1 point and image sun’s magnetic field from space for the very first time in the world.
- Scientists intend to capture close-ups of sun from point L1, uninterrupted by eclipses for years.
- PSLV XL will be used for launching Aditya L1 into the halo orbit.
- Study the dynamic nature of Sun’s Corona (The outer most layers of the Sun, extending to thousands of km above the disc/photosphere) and Chromosphere besides collecting data about Coronal Mass Ejections (CME).
- Study the origin of solar storms and their path from the Sun to the Earth through the interplanetary space.
- Collect information for space weather prediction.
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