Aditya-L1, the Indian Sun mission for 2019-20

Q.  Which of the following is/are true regarding Aditya-L1?

1) Aditya is the nation’s second big extra-terrestrial outing after Mars
2) The spacecraft will look at the Sun from a special stable orbital slot called L1 or ‘Lagrangian’ point number 1.

- Published on 09 Feb 16

a. Only 1
b. Only 2
c. Both 1 and 2
d. Neither 1 nor 2

ANSWER: Only 2
  • Aditya is the nation’s third big extra-terrestrial outing after Moon and Mars, all conceived and designed by ADCOS, the multi-faculty body of the Indian Space Research Organisation.
  • Aditya-L1, the Indian Sun mission due after three years, may turn out to be a unique formation of not one but two spacecraft looking at the Sun from two stable orbital points.
  • ISRO has started activities to send a 400-kg spacecraft to look at the Sun from a special stable orbital slot called L1 around 2019-20. L1 or ‘Lagrangian’ point # 1 is about 1.5 million km from Earth towards the Sun.
  • There are four more Lagrangian points L2 to L5 for Sun and Earth where space objects can resist the pulls of both the celestial bodies and stay relatively stable in that orbit.
  • A second spacecraft can be sent to Point L5, about 1.3 million km away and at a 30-degree angle to L1, for a fuller picture of Sun. It could follow L1 a few months or a year apart

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