June 30, 2019

Dipankar Banerjee, an Indian solar physicist from Indian Institute of Astrophysics has been selected as a Co-Investigator of PUNCH mission by NASA.


  • Full Name: PUNCH stands for “Polarimeter to Unify the Corona and Heliosphere,”

  • Mission Objective:
    • It will image regions beyond the Sun’s outer corona.

    • it will image and track the solar wind and also the coronal mass ejections – which are huge masses of plasma that get thrown out of the Sun’s atmosphere. The coronal mass ejections can affect and drive space weather events near the Earth.

  • Features: PUNCH will consist of a ‘constellation’ of four suitcase-sized microsats that will orbit the Earth in formation and study how the corona, which is the atmosphere of the Sun, connects with the interplanetary medium.

  • Timeline: The mission is expected to be launched in 2022.

  • Agencies involved: NASA has selected Texas-based Southwest Research Institute to lead its PUNCH mission which will image the Sun.

Source : The Hindu