It is looking to launch a twin spacecraft, Proba-3 to Earth's orbit by mid-2022 to capture the Sun's inner corona in visible light and study the interactions between the Sun and its surroundings with the greatest precision.
After launching the Solar Orbiter, the European Space Agency (ESA) will deploy another mission that will observe the Sun. These missions should open up another round of helicopter physics, or the scrutiny of the sun, and how our host star has impacted the Earth and the rest of the Solar System. As already noted, this will include views of the Sun's polar regions for the first time in history. NASA's Launch Services Program based at Kennedy managed the launch.
The group running at the challenge published that the challenge undertaken through this Sun Orbiter is predicted to final a minimum of for nearly ten years and thereby stay within the golden age of sun science.
When the Parker Probe's and Solar Orbiter's orbits align, they'll be able to study the same stream of particles from the Sun at different points in space.
The National Science Foundation's Daniel K. Inouye Solar Telescope is a microscope for the Sun, gathering detailed observations about the star's surface from Earth. It counts the most abundant particles present in coronal solar winds - electrons, protons and helium ions - and measure properties such as their velocities, densities, and temperatures.
For her part, Holly Gilbert, director of NASA's heliophysics science division said: "We have one common goal and that is to get the good science out of this mission".
To protect the sensitive instruments from the sun's blistering heat, engineers devised a heat shield with an outer black coating made of burned bone charcoal similar to what was used in prehistoric cave paintings.
Nicolaou joined the team of Solar Orbiter in 2017 when he started working at the Mullard Space Science Laboratory. "We have to survive both high heat and extreme cold". They are equipped with specially designed windows to block the heat. At the same time, the staying four are in-situ instruments, which will quantify the general condition around the shuttle contained the Sun oriented breeze, plasma, and particles.
"Besides understanding [solar energetic particles] better, Parker will give us our first look of the solar wind below what is called the Alfvén radius", wrote Szabo.
Nicolaou said Solar Orbiter will approach the Sun and take photographs of its regions while analysing the Solar magnetic field and the material that is constantly flowing in space interacting with Earth and the planets in our solar system. They're hubs for the sun's magnetic field, flipping polarity every 11 years.
Solar Orbiter's observations of the poles could also lead to better predictions of space weather because it can provide a better view of the magnetic field.