Europe's Solar Orbiter reached the closest distance to photograph the sun yesterday, and now we have to wait for spectacular photos of it.
Solar Europe recorded its closest distance to the sun on March 26 (April 6), passing about one-third of the distance from the sun to the earth, and we can expect to see amazing and record-breaking images of the sun soon.
A bold European Solar Orbiter mission with the participation of NASA looked at the Sun from a distance of only 48.3 million kilometers on Saturday morning at 07:50 Eastern Time Zone (16:20 Tehran time). It broke its previous record for the closest images taken of the Sun.
While NASA's Parker Solar Probe gets even closer to the Sun, it is only a short distance away. A few million kilometers from the surface of the sun, the environment it encounters is so hot that it cannot point its camera at the Sun. So, the title of the best close-up photographer for the sun belongs to the European "Solar Orbiter".
On Thursday, the European Space Agency released images taken by the spacecraft two weeks ago. When the probe was exactly halfway between the sun and our planet (77 million kilometers from Earth) and was moving toward its hollow (closest point) elliptical orbit around the Sun.
This new mosaic image from a distance of 75 million
kilometers, consists of 25 single images.
Since the launch of the Solar Orbiter in February 2020, ground control teams have been gradually reducing the spacecraft's orbit around the Sun. Therefore, the closest distances of the spacecraft to the sun in the previous passages were made in a farther position. Future depressions will also see the Solar orbit diving to closer distances to the sun, about 42 million kilometers above the sun's surface. They used its magnetic field as well as the Solar wind emitted by the star when it collided with the spacecraft.
Scientists are now eager to study the new data. Images taken of the first Solar Orbiter approaching the sun in June 2020 showed miniature flares of the sun, nicknamed "Campfire", which had never been seen before.
Close-up view of the sun in intense ultraviolet light
He emphasized that the sun now has much more energy than it appears in the new phase of its 11-year cycle, adding:" The sun may seem calm at first glance. But when we look in detail, we can see those miniature flares everywhere.
So compared to previous photos, the sun is now waking And its activities have increased, which promises a more dynamic landscape in new data.
Cover photo: Graphic design of the European Solar
Credit: European Space Agency