The spacecraft has detected a small jet that may be an elusive source of the Sun’s solar wind.
The discovery was made by the European Space Agency (ESA) solar probe. The satellite is the most complex scientific laboratory ever sent to the Sun, according to ESA.
Using the Extreme Ultraviolet Imager (EUI), a series of remote-sensing telescopes, the spacecraft discovered jets of material emerging from the Sun’s outer atmosphere.
Each jet has a duration of 20-100 seconds. During this split second, charged particles known as plasma are ejected at about 100 kilometers per second. Scientists suspect jets power the solar wind.
The solar wind is produced by the outward expansion of plasma from the sun’s outermost atmosphere. Its atmosphere is known as the corona.
As the solar wind passes through the solar system, its speed reaches over a million miles per hour. When it collides with the Earth’s magnetic field, it can cause auroras and Southern Lights, as well as disrupt GPS and communication systems. It also protects the earth from other harmful particles coming from the earth. space.
Despite its enormous impact on the universe, the origin of the solar wind remains a mystery. But the Solar Orbiter has shed new light on that secret.
The research team credited many of the achievements of the EUI instrument.
Thanks to the unprecedented high-resolution, high-rhythm images produced by the EUI, we were able to detect these tiny jets,” said Lakshmi Pradeep, lead author of the paper on the discovery. Chitta said.
The spacecraft will now slowly tilt its orbit toward the poles. If it does, it will give us another view of the solar wind.
ESA’s Solar probe project scientist Daniel Mueller hopes the new observations will provide further evidence.
“When you look at these little jets head-on, it’s hard to measure some of their properties, but in a few years we’ll be able to see the jets from a different perspective than other telescopes and observatories, so let’s work together.” That should help a lot,” he said. He said.
https://thenextweb.com/news/esa-solar-orbiter-sports-solar-wind-source Probe finds small jet that may be source of solar wind