Ulysses: A journey above the Sun's poles

Authors


Abstract

The Ulysses spacecraft was launched on October 6, 1990. The mission, like the legendary Greek hero for whom it is named, will venture into previously unexplored and uncharted regions—the areas that lie above the sun's polar caps. Also like its namesake, the spacecraft is expected to return reports of new lands and strange creatures—or at least information about physical conditions and processes that we have not been able to study directly. We expect reports about the Sun, the heliosphere, the local interstellar medium, and about signals invading the solar system from the distant galaxy. This adventure is the result of a partnership between the National Aeronautics and Space Administration (NASA) and the European Space Agency (ESA).