In order for Solar Orbiter to get into its final orbit, it needs to conduct several Venus gravity assist maneuvers. During the first of these Venus flybys, the Solar Orbiter Energetic Particle Detector (EPD) was able to explore the energetic particle environment around Venus in a way not previously possible. This allowed for a characterization of the different acceleration mechanisms around the planet and in the magnetotail. These results have been published along with papers from other instrument teams on Solar Orbiter in a special issue in Astronomy & Astrophysics.
Solar Orbiter unveiling the energetic particle environment around Venus!
Updated: Jun 9, 2021
Credit: Johns Hopkins APL/Ben Smith