China launches ASO-S satellite to study the Sun

(ORDO NEWS) — China’s Long March 2D rocket has successfully launched and put into orbit the advanced ASO-S space-based solar observatory.

The launch of the rocket with a satellite on board took place on October 9 from the Jiuquan Cosmodrome in Gansu Province in northwest China.

The ASO-S spacecraft, nicknamed “Kuafu-1” in honor of the giant from Chinese mythology (he wanted to catch up and capture the sun – however, he failed), is equipped with three devices – a magnetograph for studying the solar magnetic field, an X-ray scanner for studies of high-energy radiation during solar flares, and a coronagraph for analyzing plasma generated during flares.

ASO-S is designed to operate for at least four years.

The observatory will provide scientists with information about how the Sun’s magnetic field causes coronal mass ejections and other bursts that can affect Earth’s atmosphere.

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