Russian researchers propose to send several swarm probes to the Sun to study the speed of winds, reveals the director of the Space Research Institute, Russian Academy of Sciences, Anatoli Petrukovich.
“So far we do not fully understand how the solar wind originates. It appears that it is simply the release of hot gas, but measurements of speed and temperature do not match with any model. Apparently, there is an additional source of energy,” the researcher, author of more than 150 articles in internationally renowned journals, told Sputnik.
To solve this mystery, Petrukovich suggests resorting to a swarm of probes that will approach the area where the solar wind accelerates, at a distance of four times the radius of the Sun or 2.8 million kilometers.
“Small kamikaze probes are needed to get as close as possible and transmit the information to a large satellite before disintegrating,” he explained.
The researcher stressed that the proposal is intensively debated and could be made after 2030.
In addition, the Russian Institute for Space Studies announced plans to launch a satellite within five years to study the impact of the solar wind on Earth.
“We hope that in 2025, the Rezonans satellite will fly to study the influence of the solar wind around the Earth,” said Petrukovich.
The researcher also announced that a second series of these devices is planned to explore radioactive belts, the most dangerous areas of the magnetosphere in which geostationary communications satellites operate.
The Rezonans satellite is expected to be in an elliptical orbit with a minimum altitude of 7,000 kilometers and a maximum of 160,000. Its mission is to study the dynamics of plasma turbulence around the Earth for three years.
The researchers also plan to launch the Arka telescope to capture images and to study the Sun’s corona.