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January 30 – February 5, 2012 / Vol 31, No 5 / Hawai`i Island, USA

27 Jan 2012, 21:36 UTC
January 30 – February 5, 2012 / Vol 31, No 5 / Hawai`i Island, USA
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Europe Focuses on Sun at Max Planck Institute Seminar this week and ESA Solar Orbiter Mission Approved for 2017

Max Planck Institute seminar focused on solar wind and the corona coincides with recent approval of the ESA Solar Orbiter mission for launch in 2017. The meeting, titled From the Heliosphere into the Sun – Sailing Against the Wind, held January 31 – February 3 at the Physikzentrum Bad Honnef near Bonn, Germany, is funded by the WE-Heraeus Foundation. Intended as a forum to discuss advances in solar science over the last 3 decades, including the first high-resolution X-ray and EUV observations of the corona and the first detailed measurements of the ion and electron velocity distribution functions in the inner heliosphere, the meeting will also look towards future research. The Solar Orbiter mission recently selected by ESA will carry its telescopes closer to the Sun than any spacecraft in history, within 0.28AU, providing unprecedented resolution of solar features. Moreover, the spacecraft’s orbit will reach speeds almost matching the axial rotation of the Sun, 7.189x103km/h at the equator, thereby allowing for several days of contiguous data on evolving storms in the heliosphere. (Image Credit: MPS, ESA, SXT, Hinode X-Ray Telescope)
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