Metis: the multi-wavelength coronagraph for the Solar Orbiter mission


Metis is the coronagraph of the scientific payload of Solar Orbiter, the first mission of the European Space Agency (ESA) program Cosmic Vision 2015-2025. Solar Orbiter has been conceived to explore for the first time the poles of the Sun and the circumsolar region.

The Metis experiment is an international collaboration led by the Italian National Institute for Astrophysics (INAF) and supported by the Italian Space Agency (ASI), involving several Universities in Italy and research institutes in the world.

The innovative instrument design has been conceived for simultaneously imaging the visible and ultraviolet emission of the Sun's corona. Observations obtained with Metis will enable us to diagnose, with unprecedented temporal coverage and spatial resolution, the structures and dynamics of the full corona.


Find out more »

Metis science objectives


Involved institutes


Solar Orbiter: exploring the Sun


ESA’s Solar Orbiter mission is conceived to perform a close-up study of our Sun and inner heliosphere – the uncharted innermost regions of our Solar System – to better understand, and even predict, the unruly behaviour of the star on which our lives depend. The spacecraft launch is foreseen in February 2020.


Find out more »

Mission timeline


Nov 2016 Dec 2016 Apr 2017 26 Apr 2017 Jul 2017 Dec 2018 1 Aug 2019 Nov 2019 6 Feb 2020 Metis integration First calibration campaign Second calibration campaign Metis delivery to ESA Metis integration on the S/C Environmental test campaign Cap ejection test Transportation to launch site Launch
Mar 2020 31 Mar 2020 May 2020 Nov 2021 Jan 2026 Sep 2030 Commissioning Metis first light Start of Cruise Phase Start of Nominal Phase Start of Extendend Phase Mission end