India to Launch Its First Solar Mission in 2020, ISRO Chief Says


India is to launch Aditya-L1, its first mission to study the sun, in 2020, Indian Space Research Organisation Chairman K. Sivan said on Thursday.

“The aim of the mission is to keep a permanent eye on the sun without any disturbance. Aditya-L1 is meant to observe the solar corona,” Sivan told media in a press briefing in New Delhi. He said there are still a lot of things that are to be learnt about the sun.

Aditya-L1 mission is expected to be inserted in a halo orbit around the Lagrangian point 1 (L1) – which is 1.5 million km from the earth – so that there is a major advantage of continuously viewing the sun without any occultation/eclipses, Sivan added.

K Sivan also said, India would have its own space station. The project will be an extension of the Gaganyaan mission.  ”We have to sustain the Gaganyaan programme after the launch of (the) human space mission. In this context, India is planning to have its own space station,” Sivan told reporters.

India will launch its second moon mission Chandrayaan-2 on July 15 from Sriharikota spaceport in Andhra Pradesh and land its rover on the lunar surface on September 6, Sivan said on Wednesday.

“The 3,890kg Chandrayaan-2 mission will be launched on board a heavy rocket from our spaceport at Sriharikota on July 15 at 02.15am, with an orbiter, a lander and a rover,” Sivan said.

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