ESA solar orbiter March 26 (April 6) It entered its closest orbital distance, the so-called abyss, and passed the orbit of Mercury at a distance of about 48 million kilometers. At such intervals the temperature reached about 500 degrees Celsius. Future orbits are expected to be even closer and hotter.
As the spacecraft orbited the Sun, it saw it from a place never seen before. Among other things, he managed to record a mysterious and amazing feature called the "Hedgehog" and detailed views of the sun's poles that are usually hidden.
Working together for the first time, they have been captured and provide a wealth of data to reveal the Sun's behavior, including its wild magnetic fields and the sometimes turbulent climate it launches into interstellar space.
Europe, which previously had a spectacular, high-resolution image of this close passage, has now released a new video of the encounter that shows a magnificent view of the sun from the explorer's eye.
The purpose of the solar orbit
The solar orbiter is supposed to make a big difference in our awareness of the sun, especially since it can show us parts of the sun that we usually cannot see. For example, because of the Earth's position in the Sun's equatorial orbit, it is very difficult to study its poles, and only a spacecraft orbiting above and below the sun can see these areas.
Polar areas are thought to be They are very important in creating solar magnetic fields that play a major role in solar activity. However, because the poles are hard to see, we still do not know what happens to the magnetic fields there, but now the solar orbiter, with its array of scientific instruments, offers unprecedented insights into these mysterious regions.
The sun Antarctic probe on March 30 (April 10) showed an area whose activity is linked to the magnetic field lines of a ring moving away from the Sun. The solar hedgehog is another attraction that the spacecraft recorded on April 10, and solar physicists have not yet figured out exactly what it is and how it formed.
This area consists of a relatively small area of about 25,000 kilometers. Which was photographed in the light of "Extreme Ultraviolet" or high-energy ultraviolet to reveal its activity. Activities in this area include hotter and cooler beams of solar gas in all directions in the solar corona, or the atmosphere from which they protrude. " These pictures are really breathtaking. "Even if the solar orbiter stops recording data tomorrow, I will spend years trying to figure out all the current data." The amplitude of the solar effect is defined by the solar wind, the boundary of which extends beyond Pluto's orbit. The solar wind carries particles and magnetic fields into interplanetary space and interacts with the planets.
The closer the solar orbiter is to the sun, the better it can sample how the solar wind blows. On March 21, the spacecraft detected the output of energetic particles as it approached its first passage, and even from such a distance, the detection was obvious. First the more energetic particles and then the less energetic particles reached the spacecraft. This indicates that these particles were produced not near the position of the solar orbiter, but close to the surface of the sun.
Other instruments recorded other solar events that could accelerate the particles produced. Including solar flares and corona mass launches, which were not unlike the corona mass launchers observed by the spacecraft on March 10 (see March 19).
The sun is now at the beginning of the new solar cycle and is fully active. So the spacecraft is set to send new sets of valuable data on solar activity to Earth. Europe's solar orbiter has at least 14 more moons planned before 2030, in which it travels up to 40 million kilometers to the sun, using flights close to the planet Venus to increase its speed as it orbits.
This first abyss, full of new data and observations, is a tempting example of future solar data. Daniel Mueller "We are very excited about the data quality of the first spacecraft," said Mller, a solar physicist and scientist in the solar orbit project. "It's almost hard to believe this is just the beginning of the mission and we will do a lot more."
Source: Science Alert