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Aditya L1 - ISRO Sun Mission

By Riddhi MishraSeptember 12, 2023
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It’s Time To Explore Sun Aditya L1 Mission

The Sun, the brilliant source of energy and life, commands the stage in our solar system's enormous cosmic theatre. In our technology-driven world, it is not just important to understand the Sun's intricate workings on a scientific level. Enter Aditya L1, India's revolutionary solar monitoring project, which aims to shed light on the Sun's mysterious behaviour and reveal its darkest secrets. The first of its type, the Indian spacecraft Aditya L1 is solely focused on studying the Sun, our nearest star.

The goals of the Aditya L1 mission include a thorough comprehension of the physics of the Sun and its extensive impact on space weather. Aditya L1 stands for India's dedication to developing solar science and enhancing our understanding of the Sun's behaviour and impact on the environment of Earth.

ISRO Project Director Nigar Shaji guides a group of committed scientists and engineers on this ground-breaking endeavour. Aditya L1, the result of more than 15 years of planning and development, is a symbol of India's dedication to expanding the frontiers of space science and space exploration.

ISRO Sun Mission

Aditya L1 began its mission after launch by initially being put into a low-Earth orbit by the stated plan. It started its extraordinary journey towards the L1 Lagrange point by starting a Trans-Lagrangian 1 insertion manoeuvre from that point. The spacecraft is planned to perform a sequence of five further manoeuvres throughout the expected 110-day voyage from Earth to the L1 point. These manoeuvres are essential for generating the speed required for Aditya-L1 to eventually arrive at the gravitationally stable L1 location.

An important phase of the mission begins to unfold as it approaches the L1 Lagrange point. Aditya-L1 is set to carry out yet another precise manoeuvre, but this time it will be to create an orbit around this unique site. Despite its erratic shape, its orbit will be precisely aligned, keeping a roughly perpendicular alignment to the line that connects the Sun and Earth. Aditya-L1 will be able to accomplish its mission goals by providing uninterrupted observations of the Sun and its outer layers thanks to this tactical posture.

Aditya L1 Goals

The Aditya L1 mission has a wide range of scientific goals, all of which are intended to deepen our understanding of the Sun and its intricate processes. Here are some of the goals:

  • Study The Dynamics of the Sun: Aditya L1 goal is to watch and examine the dynamics of the Sun's chromosphere and corona to better understand the complex behaviours of these outer layers of the star.

  • Coronal and Chromospheric Heating: The mission looks into the processes that heat the corona and chromosphere. It explores coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and the physics of partly ionised plasma.

  • Studies On the Solar Magnetic Field and Flares: The studies conducted by Aditya L1 provide light on the causes and features of solar flares by looking at the coronal magnetic field and heat transfer processes.

  • In-situ Particle Environment: The mission keeps track of the in-situ particle environment, which aids in our comprehension of solar particle dynamics.

  • Aditya L1 establishes the sequence of events that take place in the layers underneath the corona that give rise to solar outbursts like flares and CMEs. 

  • Space Weather Drivers: Foreseeing and minimising the consequences of space weather on Earth and throughout our solar system, it is essential to comprehend the causes of space weather as well as the formation, make-up, and dynamics of solar wind.

As scientists and engineers investigated the potential, the mission's scope grew over time. The project expanded as it became clear how important the Sun is to comprehending space weather and its effects on Earth's technologically advanced culture. Beyond its original limitations, it developed into a thorough observatory of the sun and space environment. Positioned at the vantage point of Lagrange point L1, this pioneering spacecraft promises to unravel the mysteries of the Sun, offering insights into its dynamic behaviours, the origins of solar phenomena, and their consequences for space weather.

The Advisory Committee for Space Sciences (ADCOS) had a dream in 2008 that served as the inspiration for Aditya-L1's journey. This project has undergone 15 years of painstaking planning, growth, and extension and has now become a representation of India's scientific might. In 2019, it was appropriately renamed "Aditya-L1" to reflect its development and the broadened nature of its goal. The Aditya-L1 mission's voyage is proof of the power of tenacity, creativity, and scientific curiosity. The project underwent a remarkable transformation from its conception to its eventual launch, demonstrating India's dedication to advancing solar and space science.

FAQs on Aditya L1 - ISRO Sun Mission

1: When was the Aditya L1 launch date?

On September 2, 2023, at 11:50 IST, Aditya-L1 was launched aboard the PSLV C57, 10 days following the successful landing of Chandrayaan 3 by the Indian Space Research Organisation.

2: Who is the Aditya-L1 mission's project director?

On this revolutionary project, a team of dedicated scientists and engineers is led by project director Nigar Shaji. The culmination of more than 15 years of planning and development, Aditya L1 is a testament to India's commitment to pushing the boundaries of space science.

3: What equipment for science is on Aditya L1?

Seven scientific payloads, including electromagnetic, particle, and magnetic field detectors, are carried by Aditya-L1. These devices are intended for studying the interplanetary medium as well as the photosphere, chromosphere, and corona of the Sun.

4: How much did the Aditya L1 cost?

Aditya L1 cost has not been disclosed by the ISRO, however, the BBC stated that it is estimated to cost 3.78 billion rupees, or $46 million, based on information from Indian media sources.