ESA will launch in December, its most expensive space observatory





Official representatives of the European Space Agency (ESA) announced that the construction of the most expensive spacecraft, space observatory Gaia, has been completed and the device is ready for launch, which is expected to be held December 20, 2013.

“Gaia” will be the first spacecraft capable of conducting the study of our galaxy, the Milky Way in a three-dimensional projection, observing and gathering information about the more than one billion stars located in it. The total number of stars in our galaxy is at least 100 billion.

During the next five years, “Gaia” will monitor the space and the horizon of at least 70 times will direct his attention to every star in his field of vision. The obtained data scientists then combined into a common database, which will be based on the established model of the Milky Way and the stars in our galaxy.

Assembly space observatory “Gaia” European companies engaged EADS Astrium and e2v Technologies. The total development cost is estimated at about 580 million euros. Weight observatory is 2 tons. In orbit, the telescope will deliver the Russian Soyuz launcher from the launch complex ELS / Soyuz, located at Kourou, in French Guiana that.

ESA representatives reported that the launch is scheduled for December 20. If all goes well, the rocket “Soyuz” deliver “Gaia” in low-Earth Lagrange point L2. Recall that each of the five Lagrange points allows spacecraft to remain in the same position relative to the Sun-Moon-Earth.

“Gaia will be a revolution in the field of knowledge of the visible universe. First we can see that there is, where it is, how it moves or does not move, as the dark matter is distributed where and when stars were formed and what chemical elements were formed during their creation, “- says Gerry Gilmore, one of the project managers’ gaya “from the University of Cambridge.

“Gaia will make us a huge step in understanding how our galaxy formed and evolved to the stage that we see today. First time in history we can see the Milky Way in three dimensions, see where the stars and how they move. ”

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Tags: Gaia , the European Space Agency , Space Telescopes .

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