Trans-Lagrangean Point 1 Insertion (TL1I) Manoeuvre
India’s pioneering solar observatory, Aditya-L1, has commenced its journey to Lagrange Point 1 (L1), located along the Sun-Earth line. The Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO) executed the trans-Lagrangian 1 insertion (TL1I) maneuver successfully, initiating Aditya-L1’s 110-day voyage to L1, which is approximately 1.5 million km from Earth. The spacecraft will provide valuable insights into the origin, acceleration, and anisotropy of solar wind and space weather phenomena. ISRO’s Supra Thermal and Energetic Particle Spectrometer (STEPS) instrument, part of the Aditya Solar Wind Particle Experiment (ASPEX) payload, has started collecting scientific data.
Objective and Destination
The Aditya-L1 mission aims to study the Sun from a space-based solar observatory. It is headed towards Lagrange Point 1 (L1), located along the Sun-Earth line.
Significance of trans-Lagrangian 1 insertion (TL1I) maneuver
The TL1I maneuver is crucial to align Aditya-L1’s trajectory with the unique Lagrange Point 1 (L1) in space, marking the start of its voyage towards this destination.
Location and Significance of L1
L1 is approximately 1.5 million km away from Earth, representing just 1 percent of the distance between Earth and the Sun. It is significant for solar observations as it offers an ideal vantage point along the Sun-Earth line.
Role of STEPS Instrument
Developed by the Physical Research Laboratory (PRL) with support from the Space Application Centre, STEPS measures ions and electrons in different directions, offering insights into particle behavior in Earth’s magnetosphere. It is a vital component of the Aditya Solar Wind Particle Experiment (ASPEX) payload.
Latest Data from STEPS
STEPS began collecting scientific data on September 10, 2023, from a distance exceeding 50,000 km from Earth. One unit of STEPS has already provided measurements depicting variations in the energetic particle environment within Earth’s magnetosphere.
Significance of STEPS
Data collection by STEPS will persist during the cruise phase of the Aditya-L1 mission as it progresses toward the Sun-Earth L1 point. These measurements will continue once the spacecraft is positioned in its intended orbit, contributing to a better understanding of solar phenomena.
Category: Science & Technology Current Affairs