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Posts Tagged ‘Euclid telescope

Euclid telescope to probe dark universe

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Euclid will conduct its surveys 1.5 million kilometres from Earth on its “night side”

Europe has given the final go-ahead to a space mission to investigate the “dark universe”.

The Euclid telescope will look deep into the cosmos for clues to the nature of dark matter and dark energy.

These phenomena dominate the Universe, and yet scientists concede they know virtually nothing about them.

European Space Agency (Esa) member states made their decision at a meeting in Paris. Euclid should be ready for launch in 2019.

Esa nations had already selected the telescope as a preferred venture in October last year, but Tuesday’s “adoption” by the Science Programme Committee (SPC) means the financing and the technical wherewithal is now in place to proceed.

The cost to Esa of building, launching and operating Euclid is expected to be just over 600m euros (£480m; $760m). Member states will provide Euclid’s visible wavelength camera and a near-infrared camera/spectrometer, taking the likely cost of the whole endeavour beyond 800m euros.

The US has been offered, and will accept, a junior role in the mission valued at around 5%. The American space agency (Nasa) will pay for this by picking up the tab for the infrared detectors needed on Euclid. A memorandum of understanding to this effect will be signed between the agencies in due course.

“We have negotiated a detailed text with Nasa, which both parties consider final, and it is ready for signature,” said Dr Fabio Favata, Esa’s head of science planning……

Read more: www.bbc.co.uk

Written by physicsgg

June 20, 2012 at 12:59 pm

Europe to lead daring Sun mission

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The probe will orbit closer to the Sun than any previous spacecraft

Europe is to lead the most ambitious space mission ever undertaken to study the behaviour of the Sun.

Known as Solar Orbiter, the probe will have to operate a mere 42 million km from our star – closer than any spacecraft to date.

The mission proposal was formally adopted by European Space Agency (Esa) member states on Tuesday.

Solar Orbiter is expected to launch in 2017 and will cost close to a billion euros.

Nasa (the US space agency) will participate, providing two instruments for the probe and the rocket to send it on its way.

The Esa delegates, who were meeting in Paris, also selected a mission to investigate two of the great mysteries of modern cosmology – dark matter and dark energy….. Read the rest of this entry »

Written by physicsgg

October 5, 2011 at 8:39 am