Aditya-L1: India's First Solar Mission
Science Payloads: Aditya-L1’s Tools in Space
Writer: Tulika Prashant
Illustrator: Shrutika Gorule

In space exploration, a payload refers to the spacecraft, instruments, equipments, basically everything that a vehicle launcher carries into space.  Science payloads, such as specialized cameras and sensors, do important tasks and gather data. These payloads help us understand space, study stars, explore planets and learn more about our own Earth.  

Aditya-L1 carries seven science payloads, all of them designed and developed in India, to observe the solar atmosphere, primarily the chromosphere and corona. The Sun’s atmosphere or outer layer is made up of several layers, mainly the photosphere, the chromosphere and the corona. Corona is the outermost layer and the photosphere is the deepest layer of the Sun’s atmosphere that we can observe directly.The Chromosphere is a layer between these two. 

Four of these payloads are like Sun cameras, taking pictures of the Sun and capturing lights remotely. The other three will study solar particles and solar magnetic fields in situ* at the L1 point. The Sun continuously affects Earth through radiation, heat and a consistent stream of particles and magnetic fields. This stream of solar particles is called solar wind, which is primarily made up of high-energy protons.  

*In astronomy, “in situ” means studying things right where they are in space, without bringing them back to Earth. For example, scientists use space instruments to study and analyze the moon’s soil on the moon itself. 

VELC: Visible Emission Line Coronagraph

SUIT: Solar Ultra-violet Imaging Telescope

SoLEX: Solar Low Energy X-ray Spectrometer

HEL1OS: High Energy L1 Orbiting X-ray Spectrometer

ASPEX: Aditya Solar Wind Particle Experiment

PAPA: Plasma Analyser Package for Aditya; MAG: Magnetometer 


About the writer:  

Tulika is an alumna of NIT Jamshedpur and IIM Lucknow. She is the founder of Periodic Table Game Atomics and—a platform that helps parents find the right school for their kids. Before venturing into entrepreneurship, she worked for Hewlett Packard, Alstom, and Vedanta. Her passion for writing for children stems from the belief that kids are incredibly curious and always ready to explore new things. Through her writing, she aims to foster a love for learning in the next generation.


Aditya L1 | ISRO

Aditya L1 Mission | ISRO


You May Also Like these…