Sun & Solar System

Studies of the Sun and solar system have been the longest pursued discipline at IIA. More than a century long observational studies of the Sun are continuing to be actively pursued at the Kodaikanal Solar Observatory.

Members of the group conduct theoretical, numerical modeling, and observational research on the working of the Sun: structure and dynamics of its interior (through helioseismology), its photosphere, chromosphere, and the corona. Members have carried out research using the Institute's own facilities as well as international facilities on the ground and in space (e.g. SOHO,TRACE, HINODE, SDO), have contributed to and kept pace with recent advances.

(I) Solar Interior Dynamics and Helioseismology   Go to Top
Modeling studies related to understanding the interior of the Sun, the sunspots on its surface, the sunspot cycle, and its relation to energetic eruptions from the Sun are the key research areas on the theoretical front. Three-dimensional magnetohydrodynamic (MHD) simulations with high performance computing (HPC) facilities within the country as well as abroad are used for some of these studies.

(II) Solar Magnetic Fields, Magnetohydrodynamics and Radiative Transfer   Go to Top
Magnetic fields are responsible for the activity of the Sun and therefore it is important to understand the physical processes underlying the
generation of magnetic fields and their interaction with the atmospheric medium.

(III) Lower Solar Atmosphere — Waves and Transients   Go to Top
Multiwavelength studies combining imaging, spectral, and polarimetric observations with ground-based and space-based instruments are carried out to investigate the dynamics of sunspot regions and the different layers of the solar atmosphere. Statistical studies of the solar activity and its variability using the 100 years of unique data on sunspot and chromospheric activity (Ca K) from the Kodaikanal observatory, theoretical/observational studies of Sun as a star, and solar-stellar connections are also carried out.

(IV) Solar Coronal Studies   Go to Top
Coronal heating, acceleration of the solar wind, coronal mass ejections (CMEs) and the related disturbances in the near-Earth space (i.e. space weather).

(V) Solar Radio Astronomy   Go to Top

(VI) Solar Instrumentation   Go to Top

(VII) Solar System and Solar-Terrestrial Studies   Go to Top

In the area of solar system studies, kinematics and structural deformities inside the Earth’s crust, understanding of the mass, angular momentum, magneticfield structure of different planets of the solar system are carried out.

2. Existing ground based solar observatories of IIA   Go to Top

The institute has its own dedicated solar observing facilities in the Kodaikanal Observatory (for observations in the optical wavelengths), and Gauribidanur Observatory (for observations in the radio wavelengths). Some of these observational facilities and the back-end instruments are due to continuing in-house design, fabrication and developmental efforts. A low order tip-tilt image compensation system is currently under development to understand the practical aspects of the adaptive optics (AO), which is important to improve the angular resolution and sensitivity of the ground based optical telescopes.

(I) Kodaikanal Solar Observatory

(II) Gauribidanur Radio Telescope

3. Upcoming solar facilities   Go to Top

The Institute is now planning ambitious observational facilities to be managed by IIA, both on ground (the National Large Solar Telescope) and in space (Visible Emission Line Space Coronagraph), in partnership with several other Indian institutions and the Indian Space Research Organisation (ISRO). These initiatives have taken several years of planning and field work in the recent past resulting in concrete developmental activities, including a formal Government approval to build the space coronagraph (now part of Aditya L1 mission of ISRO) to study the solar corona and a detailed concept study and proposal for a ground based National Large Solar Telescope (NLST)


(II) Aditya

4. Sun & Solar System Studies Group Members   Go to Top
Click Here to view Sun & Solar System Studies Group Members

Last updated on: February 20, 2024