Aditya L1 successfully undergoes fourth earth-bound maneuvre: ISRO

Aditya L1, ISRO
Image Source : ISRO Aditya L1 spacecraft, India’s first space-based mission to study the Sun

Aditya-L1 Mission: Aditya L1, India’s first space-based mission to study the Sun, during the early hours on Friday, successfully completed its fourth earth-bound maneuvre, the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) said. The maneuvre happened at 2:15 am.

The space agency said that the ISRO’s ground stations at Mauritius, Bengaluru, SDSC-SHAR and Port Blair tracked the satellite during this operation, while a transportable terminal currently stationed in the Fiji islands for Aditya-L1  will support post-burn operations. 

“The fourth Earth-bound maneuvre (EBN#4) is performed successfully. ISRO’s ground stations at Mauritius, Bengaluru, SDSC-SHAR and Port Blair tracked the satellite during this operation, while a transportable terminal currently stationed in the Fiji islands for Aditya-L1 will support post-burn operations,” the space agency said in a post on X.

Next maneuvre on September 19

The ISRO said that the new orbit attained is 256 km x 121973 km. With the completion of four earth-bound orbital manoeuvres, Aditya-L1 will next undergo a Trans-Lagrangian1 insertion manoeuvre, marking the beginning of its nearly 110-day trajectory to the destination around the L1 Lagrange point.

“The next maneuvre Trans-Lagragean Point 1 Insertion (TL1I) — a send-off from the Earth — is scheduled for September 19, around 02:00 Hrs. IST,” it said.

The first, second and third earth-bound maneuvre were successfully performed on September 3, 5 and 10, respectively.  The solar mission, will undergo a total of five orbit-raising maneuvre to achieve the necessary speed to reach its destination, the Sun-Earth Lagrange Point 1 (L1).

The maneuvre are required to be performed during the spacecraft’s 16-day journey around the earth, during which it will gain the velocity necessary for its onward journey to L1. Aditya-L1 is expected to arrive at the intended orbit at the L1 point after about 127 days.

ISRO’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C57) had on September 2 successfully launched Aditya-L1 from the Second Launch Pad of Satish Dhawan Space Centre, Sriharikota. Aditya-L1 is the first Indian space-based observatory that will study the Sun from a halo orbit around the first Sun-Earth Lagrangian point (L1), which is located roughly 1.5 million km from the Earth.

About Aditya-L1 Mission

According to ISRO, the spacecraft placed in a halo orbit around the Lagrange point 1 (L1) of the Sun-Earth system, which is about 1.5 million km from the Earth, has the major advantage of continuously viewing the Sun without any occultation or eclipses.

This will provide a greater advantage of observing solar activities and its effect on space weather in real-time.  The spacecraft carries seven payloads developed indigenously by the ISRO and national research laboratories, including the Indian Institute of Astrophysics, Bengaluru, and the Inter-University Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, Pune.

The payloads will observe the photosphere, chromosphere and the outermost layers of the Sun (the corona) using electromagnetic and particle and magnetic field detectors. Using the special vantage point L1, four payloads directly view the Sun and the remaining three payloads carry out in-situ studies of particles and fields at the Lagrange point L1, thus providing important scientific studies of the propagatory effect of solar dynamics in the interplanetary medium.

The suits of Aditya L1 payloads are expected to provide the most crucial information to understand the problem of coronal heating, coronal mass ejection, pre-flare and flare activities and their characteristics, dynamics of space weather, and propagation of particles and fields.

According to scientists, there are five Lagrangian points, or parking areas, between the Earth and the Sun where a small object tends to stay put.

The Lagrange Points are named after Italian-French mathematician Joseph-Louis Lagrange. These points in space can be used by spacecraft to remain there with reduced fuel consumption.

At a Lagrange point, the gravitational pull of the two large bodies (the Sun and the Earth) equals the necessary centripetal force required for a small object to move with them.

Also Read: Aditya-L1 successfully completes third earth-bound manoeuvre, says ISRO

Also Read: Aditya-L1, India’s first mission to Sun, takes selfie, clicks images of Earth and Moon

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