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Solar Orbiter, the European Space Agency’s (ESA) flagship mission to study the Sun

Solar Orbiter

Studying the sun from unique distance

  • Scheduled to launch in 2020
  • Mission: To scrutinise the Sun in unprecedented detail
  • Builds on Ulysses and SOHO programmes
  • Airbus Defence
and Space is the prime contractor for Solar Orbiter

Set for launch in 2020, Solar Orbiter builds on the successful joint European Space Agency (ESA) / NASA missions Ulysses and SOHO.

The orbiter, which is currently being designed and built by Airbus Defence and Space-led team, will scrutinise the Sun in unprecedented detail. Travelling closer to the Sun than the planet Mercury, it will make comprehensive measurements of the nascent solar wind. Its mission is to explore how the Sun creates the heliosphere, the bubble-like region of space dominated by the solar wind.

Solar Orbiter


Latest Solar Orbiter News

Solar Orbiter reaches for our star


Airbus built Solar Orbiter heads for the Sun in Florida

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Solar Orbiter on track to launch before next total solar eclipse

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