Nasa’s solar dynamic observatory (SDO) satellite has successful lifted off on its mission to study solar activity.

The observatory is an advanced spacecraft that will measure the interior of the sun, its magnetic field, hot plasma of the solar corona and the irradiance that creates the ionospheres of the planets.

The SDO, carrying three scientific instruments, will continually observe the sun to study solar activity and its impact on space weather.

The three instruments are the atmospheric imaging assembly (AIA), the helioseismic and magnetic imager (HMI), and the extreme ultraviolet variability experiment (EVE).

Together they will provide imagery of the solar corona, characterise and understand the sun’s interior and magnetic activity, and measue its brightness on the variable solar spectrum.

The satellite was launched atop a Atlas V rocket into geosynchronous orbit 22,300 miles above the earth.

The SDO was initially scheduled for lift-off on 9 February 2010, but was delayed due to high winds.

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