Arianespace and ESA announce the Euclid satellite’s launch contract for dark energy exploration
Artist's impression of the Euclid spacecraft.
Credit: ESA/ATG medialab (spacecraft); NASA, ESA, CXC, C. Ma, H. Ebeling and E. Barrett (University of Hawaii/IfA), et al. and STScI
Arianespace and ESA have announced the signing of a launch services contract for the Euclid satellite – with the mission’s timeframe for liftoff starting in mid-2022 from the Guiana Space Centre, Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana.
Following the contract signature, Günther Hasinger, ESA’s Director of Science, said: “Euclid will scrutinise the very nature of our Universe, shedding light on its dark side – the mysterious dark matter and dark energy – and building up on the great progresses made in cosmology over the past decades, which were recently recognised with a share in this year’s Physics Nobel Prize. We’re thrilled to confirm Euclid has a ticket to ride on a launcher operated by Arianespace, and we are delighted to continue working with our responsible and reliable partner to fulfil the ambitious goals of our space science programme.”
Stéphane Israël, Chief Executive Officer of Arianespace, added: “Six months after being awarded the Juice (Jupiter Icy moons Explorer) mission, Arianespace is proud to start 2020 by announcing a new iconic scientific launch for ESA. With the goal of better understanding our Universe, launching this mission aboard an Ariane 62 or Soyuz is further proof of Arianespace’s ability to offer independent access to space for Europe’s ambitions.”
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