ISRO’s Aditya-L1 mission

Context: Recently, ISRO’s Aditya-L1 mission captured images of the Sun during the May solar storm. The Solar Ultra Violet Imaging Telescope (SUIT) and the Visible Emission Line Coronagraph (VELC) instruments on board took images and made vital observations, aiding in the study of solar flares, energy distribution, sunspots, and space weather prediction.   What are Geomagnetic …

Nancy Grace Roman Telescope

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: Space.com  Context: NASA’s upcoming Nancy Grace Roman Space Telescope, set to launch in late 2026, will search for tiny primordial black holes dating back to the Big Bang. These hypothetical black holes, with masses similar to Earth or even large asteroids, could revolutionize theoretical physics if detected.   How …

Dragonfly mission

Facts for Prelims (FFP)     Source: IE  Context: NASA has confirmed its Dragonfly rotorcraft mission to Titan, Saturn’s largest moon will be scheduled for 2028. Dragonfly, a “dual-quadcopter,” will explore Titan’s organic compound-rich surface, covering tens of kilometres in under an hour due to Titan’s dense atmosphere and low gravity. Despite primarily operating on …

Coordinated Lunar Time

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: TH   Context: The White House has directed NASA to establish a unified time standard for the moon and other celestial bodies, aiming to set international norms in space amidst a competitive lunar race. The directive, outlined by the head of the White House Office of Science and Technology …

Kalam-250

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: TH  Context: Skyroot Aerospace successfully conducted a test firing of the Stage-2 propulsion system, named Kalam-250, of the Vikram-1 space launch vehicle. Stage 2 is crucial for propelling the launch vehicle from the atmospheric phase to outer space. The Kalam-250 utilizes high-strength carbon composite materials and a solid fuel …

POEM-3

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: TOI    Context: ISRO achieved a significant milestone with its PSLV Orbital Experimental Module-3 (POEM-3) successfully re-entering Earth’s atmosphere without leaving any debris in orbit. This achievement, following the PSLV-C58/XPoSat mission, is termed another milestone by ISRO. The operation involved converting the final stage of the PSLV into POEM-3 …

MeerKAT radio telescope

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: TH   Context: Astronomers using the MeerKAT radio telescope, initially aiming to detect hydrogen gas in a specific galaxy, made a surprising discovery by identifying 49 previously unknown galaxies. The MeerKAT telescope, a precursor to the Square Kilometre Array (SKA), showcased its potential in this discovery.

Statio Shiv Shakti

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: TH    Context: The International Astronomical Union (IAU) has approved the name ‘Statio Shiv Shakti’ for the landing site of Chandrayaan-3’s Vikram lander. The name ‘Statio Shiv Shakti’ reflects the duality of nature in Indian mythology, representing both masculine (Shiva) and feminine (Shakti) aspects. This name aligns with IAU’s …

‘Shiva’ and ‘Shakti,’ earliest building blocks of the Milky Way

  Source: IE  Context: Astronomers have discovered two ancient streams of stars, named Shakti and Shiva, which are among the earliest building blocks of the Milky Way galaxy. These streams, identified using data from the European Space Agency’s Gaia telescope, are believed to have merged with the Milky Way around 12 billion years ago. Each …

Pushpak

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: ISRO  Context: ISRO has achieved a significant breakthrough in Reusable Launch Vehicle (RLV) technology with the successful completion of the RLV LEX-02 landing experiment. This experiment, the second in the series following RLV-LEX-01, demonstrated the autonomous landing capability of the RLV, named Pushpak  

CE20 cryogenic engine

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: WION  Context: ISRO has achieved a significant milestone in its Gaganyaan mission by completing the human rating of its CE20 cryogenic engine, which powers the cryogenic stage of the human-rated LVM3 launch vehicle. Human-rating refers to rating a system that is capable of safely transporting humans This achievement comes …

Water on the surface of an asteroid

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: LiveScience  Context: For the first time ever, scientists have detected water molecules on the surface of two asteroids, Iris and Massalia, revealing new insights into the distribution of water in our solar system. This discovery was made using data collected by NASA’s Stratospheric Observatory for Infrared Astronomy (SOFIA), specifically …

Peregrine lunar lander

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: Live Mint    Context: A private US spacecraft, part of NASA’s Commercial Lunar Payload Services (CLPS) initiative, took off with the Peregrine lander module and Vulcan rocket built by private space companies. This mission aims to be the first US spacecraft to land on the Moon in over 50 …

TEMPO satellite

Facts for Prelims (FFP) Source: Hindustan Times  Context: NASA’s TEMPO satellite, the Tropospheric Emissions: Monitoring of Pollution sensor, is a ground breaking Earth-observation satellite in geostationary orbit designed to provide hourly measurements of pollutants over North America. TEMPO covers a vast area from Canada’s oil sands to the Yucatán Peninsula and spans across the Atlantic …

Hydrogen cyanide

Facts for Prelims (FFP)   Source: The Print  Context: Scientists using data from NASA’s Cassini spacecraft have discovered hydrogen cyanide, a crucial molecule for life formation, in the oceans of Saturn’s icy moon Enceladus. Published in Nature Astronomy, the study suggests that Enceladus subsurface oceans may possess more chemical energy than previously thought, potentially supporting …