News Excerpt
Recently, ESA (European Space Agency) and NASA launched the Solar Orbiter mission. The mission is said to be dedicated to solar and heliospheric physics.

●    In 1990, NASA and ESA collaborated on a Sun mission known as Ulysses spacecraft.
●    The Spacecraft flew over the sun’s poles and completed three passes before it ended in 2009.
●    The flaw with Ulysses spacecraft was its view was limited to the sun's equator.
●    Solar Orbiter mission is a follow-up of Ulysses spacecraft.

About Solar orbiter
⮚    It forms the part of the ESA Cosmic Vision 2015-2025 programme.
⮚    It will provide images of the sun’s north and south poles.
⮚    It has a life span of 7 years and will come within 26 million miles of the sun.
⮚    It will use a specially designed titanium heat shield coated with calcium phosphate to bear the heat of sun.  
⮚    The mission will work in tandem with NASA’s Parker Solar Probe.
⮚    Mission carries several objectives such as:
o    Examining the creation and controlling mechanism of heliosphere by the Sun.
o    In Situ and remote sensing observations of
•    Solar Winds
•    Heliospheric Magnetic field
•    Solar Energetic particles
•    Sun’s magnetic field
•    Transient interplanetary disturbances
o    It will also examine various factors such as:
•    Source of coronal magnetic field
•    Driving force behind Solar winds
•    Heliospheric variability due to solar transients
•    Solar Eruptions and production of energetic particle radiation
•    Working of Solar dynamo

Importance of Solar Orbiter
    Study of the sun's magnetic field and solar wind will provide clear perception about space weather.
    Space weather impacts the satellites and astronauts on the International Space Station.
    Since the Sun's magnetic field is massive and provides a runway for solar winds to travel directly across the solar system, it can help in unraveling new information about our solar system.  

Aditya L1, Parker Solar Mission, Soho, SDO, Stereo