Recording of the online conference of Philippe Louarn, director of research at the CNRS, director of the Institute for Research in Astrophysics and Planétologie (IRAP), astrophysicist. 26 January 2021.
Two probes, Solar Orbiter (ESA) and Parker Solar Probe (PSP) have begun their long journey to explore the inner areas of the heliosphere and the solar corona. For both, but with different means, it is a question of highlighting, characterizing and quantifying the processes that give rise to the solar wind, accelerate it and determine its astonishing structural and dynamic diversity. After a few months of operations, the ingredients of a successful space adventure are already being found: the exploration of virgin regions, innovative measures of fundamental processes (turbulence for example), the identification of suspected but unsophisticated phenomena and mechanisms, a new approach to a complex system: the heliosphere in this case. Our PAS (Proton Alfa Sensor) instrument on Solar Orbiter, developed at IRAP, will naturally have preferential treatment!