Aditya-L1 spacecraft has successfully completed its fourth maneuver on Earth, ISRO said

AKIPRESS.COM – After completion of four Earth orbit maneuvers, Aditya-L1 will next undergo Trans-Lagrangian 1 insertion maneuver, The Hindustan Times reported.

Aditya L1 spacecraft, India’s first space-based mission to study the Sun, successfully completed its fourth maneuver on Earth early on Friday, ISRO said. „The fourth grounding maneuver (EBN#4) was successfully performed. ISRO’s ground stations at Mauritius, Bengaluru, SDSC-SHAR and Port Blair monitored the satellite during the operation, while the transit terminal for Aditya in the Fiji Islands is currently down. L1 post-burn operations Support,” the space agency said in a post on X, formerly known as Twitter.

The new orbit reached is 256 km x 121973 km, it said: „The next maneuver is Trans-Lagregian Point 1 Insertion (TL1I) — launch from Earth — scheduled for September 19, at approximately 02:00 hrs. IST.”

Aditya-L1 is the first Indian space-based observatory to study the Sun from a halo orbit around the first Sun-Earth Lagrangian point (L1), located about 1.5 million km from Earth. The first, second and third Earth docking maneuvers were successfully performed on September 3, 5 and 10 respectively.

Maneuvers are performed during the spacecraft’s 16-day orbit around Earth, during which the spacecraft will gain the required speed for its further journey to L1.

After completing four Earth orbital maneuvers, Aditya-L1 will next undergo a trans-Lagrangian1 insertion maneuver, marking the start of its nearly 110-day path to the target around the L1 Lagrange point. Once at point L1, another maneuver binds Aditya L1 into an orbit around L1, which is the equilibrium point of gravity between the Earth and the Sun. The satellite spends its entire mission life around L1 in an irregularly shaped orbit in a plane approximately perpendicular to the line joining the Earth and the Sun.

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ISRO’s Polar Satellite Launch Vehicle (PSLV-C57) successfully launched the Aditya-L1 spacecraft from the second launch pad of the Satish Dhawan Space Center (SDSC) in Sriharikota on September 2.

After a flight time of 63 minutes and 20 seconds that day, the Aditya-L1 spacecraft was successfully launched into a 235×19500 km elliptical orbit around the Earth. According to ISRO, a spacecraft placed in a halo orbit around the L1 point has the major advantage of seeing the Sun continuously without any eclipse/eclipse. This will provide great advantage in observing solar activities and their impact on space weather in real time. Aditya-L1 carries seven science payloads developed indigenously by ISRO and national research laboratories, including the Indian Institute of Astrophysics (IIA) in Bangalore and the Inter-University Center for Astronomy and Astrophysics (IUCAA) in Pune.

The payloads will observe the photosphere, chromosphere, and outer layers of the Sun (corona) using electromagnetic particle and magnetic field detectors. Using a special vantage point L1, four payloads look directly at the Sun, while the remaining three payloads conduct studies of particles and fields at the Lagrange point L1. . Suits of Aditya L1 payloads are expected to provide critical information for understanding the complexities of coronal heating, coronal mass ejection, pre-flare and flare activity and their properties, 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 would stay if placed. Lagrange points are named for Italian-French mathematician Joseph-Louis Lagrange for his prize-winning essay — „Essay sur le problem des trois corps, 1772.” These points in space can be used by spacecraft to keep fuel consumption low. At a Lagrange point, the gravitational force of two large bodies (Sun and Earth) is equal to the centrifugal force required to move a smaller object along.

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