An orbiting solar spacecraft exploring the Sun came face to face with a massive explosion of plasma from the Sun, just prior to Venus’ axial flyby.
that Massive coronal mass ejection (CME), an explosion of charged particles from upper atmosphere of the sunaura, set off from the sun August 30th in the direction of Venus. A little later, the solar material bubble arrived solar orbitwhich was just preparing for its last orbital flyby of the second planet from Solar System.
Fortunately, the ESA-NASA observatory is designed to measure the kind of violent eruption it just experienced, and so it can easily withstand solar attack.
The spacecraft carries 10 scientific instruments to observe the surface of the Sun and collect data on coronal mass ejections solar wind The magnetic field of the sun. Some of these instruments have been turned off during the approach to Venus, due to potential hazards from sunlight bouncing off the highly reflective surface. Venusian atmospherethe European Space Agency said in a statement.
However, the Solar Orbiter was able to gather some valuable measurements of its environment while encountering the CME, and detected an increase in energetic solar particles. Violent solar events see particles such as protons, electrons, and even ionized helium atoms ejected from the sun and accelerated to near-relativistic speeds. These particles pose a radioactive hazard to astronauts and can damage a spacecraft. So understanding their movements and behavior in space will be of value to protecting life and technology a land And in space.
The spacecraft later succeeded in approaching Venus at 01:26 GMT on September 4 (9:26 pm EST September 3).
“The close approach went exactly as planned, thanks to a great deal of planning from our colleagues at Flight Dynamics and the tireless care of the flight control team,” said Jose Luis Bellon Bellon, director of Solar Orbiter Operations, in the statement.
The primary goal of this close approach was to allow the Solar Orbiter to change its orbit to bring it closer to the Sun. However, the probe also did during the flyby Additional Notes for the Mysterious Magnetic Field of Venus.
The Solar Orbiter was launched in 2020, two and a half years after its decade-long mission to image the Sun from the closest ever distance and study the properties of the star’s magnetic field. The spacecraft uses the gravity of Venus to change its orbit and tilt outside the plane of the ecliptic, where the planets orbit. These visits to Venus will eventually enable the Solar Orbiter to make the first-ever observations of the Sun’s unexplored poles, which are key to driving the star. 11 year activity cycletides in a generation sunspotsThe glows and explosions that affect space climate around the earth.
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