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The Euclid space telescope is coming together

on 13 July 2020

ESA’s Euclid mission, in which Romania also takes part, has reached another milestone on its journey towards launch. Its two instruments are now built and fully tested. These have been delivered to Airbus in Toulouse, France, where they are now being integrated with the telescope.

Euclid consists of a 1.2-metre mirror telescope that is designed to work at both visible and near-infrared wavelengths – the latter being just longer than the red light humans can see. The telescope will collect light from distant cosmic objects and feed it into two instruments.

The Visible instrument (VIS) and the Near Infrared Spectrometer and Photometer (NISP) will run in parallel, recording data simultaneously from whatever portion of the sky the telescope is pointed at.

Euclid’s mission is to measure the shapes of more than a billion galaxies, and the accurate redshifts of tens of millions of galaxies across more than one third of the sky. The redshift is an effect caused by the expansion of the Universe. It stretches the wavelength of light emitted by distant galaxies; the further away the galaxy, the more extreme its redshift. The galaxies in Euclid’s survey will span 10 billion years of cosmic history, and allow scientists to investigate the mysterious dark matter and dark energy that are thought to dominate the Universe.

The Institute of Space Science (ISS), under the auspices of the Romanian Space Agency (ROSA), is taking part in the Euclid Mission ever since the selection phase, in 2007, with aim to develop analysis and scientific study of the experimental data.

More information about this topic can be found at this link.

Image credit: Airbus