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French satellite Picard sends back first image of Sun


Image of the Sun acquired by Picard satellite. A CNES photo

PARIS (BNS): A month after its launch, French solar observation satellite Picard has relayed the first image of the Sun.

The image, taken on July 22 by the SODISM telescope on board Picard, “shows the solar disk almost immaculate, with the exception of a small group of spots in the lower left.”

It demonstrates the perfect functioning of the satellite, French space agency CNES said. The ground team will use the image to make final adjustments before the science mission to observe the Sun begins, it added.

The 143kg Picard, based on a micro-satellite platform, was launched by a Russian Dnepr rocket on June 15. The satellite, carrying three instruments – the 11-cm-diameter SODISM telescope and two radiometers (to measure solar irradiance) – is on a two year mission to unravel the mysteries of the Sun.

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Satellite  Picard  CNES  

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