Aditya L1 Captures First High-Energy Solar Explosion

HEL1OS Records Impulsive Phase of Solar Flares

The Indian Space Research Organisation’s (ISRO) Aditya-L1 mission is making remarkable progress as it approaches its destination at Lagrange Point 1. One of the mission’s key instruments, the High Energy L1 Orbiting X-ray Spectrometer (HEL1OS), has achieved a significant milestone. On October 29, 2023, during its initial observation period, HEL1OS successfully recorded the impulsive phase of solar flares.

Solar flares are sudden bursts of energy and radiation from the Sun’s surface and outer atmosphere, primarily in the form of X-rays and ultraviolet light. They are caused by the release of magnetic energy stored in the Sun’s atmosphere.

Launched from the Satish Dhawan Space Centre in Sriharikota on September 2, 2023, the Aditya-L1 mission aims to gain a comprehensive understanding of the Sun’s dynamics and its impact on Earth’s climate.

The HEL1OS instrument, developed by ISRO’s Space Astronomy Group in Bengaluru, is designed to monitor high-energy X-ray activity from the Sun. During its first ten-hour observation period, HEL1OS collected data consistent with the X-ray light curves provided by the National Oceanic and Atmospheric Administration’s Geostationary Operational Environmental Satellites (NOAA’s GOES).

This achievement represents a significant leap in India’s capability to study explosive energy release and electron acceleration during the impulsive phases of solar flares.

The Aditya-L1 mission is India’s first space-based observatory-class solar mission, featuring all seven payloads developed domestically. It underscores the collaborative efforts of ISRO and Indian academic institutions in advancing our understanding of the Sun and its effects on Earth.

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