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The spacecraft Solar Orbiter made its first passage through Venus

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Solar Orbiter is a space probe developed by ESA in collaboration with NASA, whose purpose is the study of solar and heliospheric physics. This space device was launched at the beginning of the year on 20 February.

At the moment the space probe is still on its way to the Sun and its arrival at our star will be in 2021, after which it will still have to reach the ideal operating orbit. Its mission is scheduled to last for 7 years with its scientific operations starting in November next year.

On the 27th of December Solar Orbiter passed through Venus and ended up also collecting information from our neighboring planet. The changeover took place at 0h39 (Lisbon time) and ESA confirmed it through the telemetry sent by the probe. The space agency also took the opportunity to share the event through Twitter.

a sonda solar orbiter realizou a primeira passagem por venus

Unfortunately, no image of the planet was captured, since the Solar Orbiter lenses are focused on the star in our solar system and the study was limited due to the extensive journey the probe has yet to make. However, information was collected on particles, magnetic fields, radioactive emissions and plasma, as well as the planet’s behavior in relation to solar winds.

Scientists at the European Space Agency will wait a few days before proceeding with the analysis of the data as the reception of data may not yet be completed. But in any case, the data obtained may contain nothing that has not already been captured. However, according to ESA, this was a great opportunity for the probe to carry out its first data collection.

We will now be waiting for Solar Orbiter to make a possible passage through Mercury, if the planet is close to the trajectory of the probe when it passes through its translation radius, and subsequently the arrival in the Sun’s orbit, where its true mission will begin.

Source: Engadget

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