Spacecraft Solar Orbiter was launched by the European space Agency (ESA) on February 10 this year. The goal is to uncover the secrets of the Sun using six scientific instruments. The device has sent the first photo, which has already yielded new discoveries.
Image was taken when the probe is approached in an elliptical orbit at a distance of 77 million kilometers, said the New Atlas. For comparison, the earth revolves around the Sun at a distance of 149 million kilometers.
“These unprecedented pictures of the Sun the most accurate and the largest of the ones we received. These wonderful images will help the scientists to connect the atmospheric layers of the Sun and understand how they affect weather in space near Earth and in the Solar system,” said Holly Gilbert, a NASA researcher.
Photo of the Sun with a record close
The mystery of the crown of the Sun
Also, these data may reveal the mystery of the corona of a star. The visible surface of the Sun heat up to 11 000°C. it would be Logical to assume that the atmosphere should be a little cooler, but observations show that it is not. The temperature of the corona is 200 – 500 times higher.
The lesions in the picture look like miniature bright flash, though in reality they are huge. What they are is not exactly known. There is speculation that they are related with large solar flares that could disrupt electronics on Earth.
Now a team of scientists waits for data from another instrument probe apparatus of spectral imaging of the corona (Spectral Imaging of the Coronal Environment, SPICE), which measures the exact temperature of these lesions. With this information, it will be possible to estimate how they affect the process of heating of the solar atmosphere.
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