The European Space Agency (ESA) has adopted Euclid, a space-based dark energy and cosmology research mission, in its Cosmic Vision 2015-2025 program. Euclid will follow the project development schedule set by ESA, with launch currently planned in the 2020 timeframe.
As an ESA-led mission with participation from NASA, Euclid will map the geometry of the dark Universe. Using two cosmological probes—weak lensing and baryonic acoustic oscillations—in a wide-field survey, Euclid will precisely measure the growth of large-scale structure and the expansion history of the Universe.
- Understanding the mechanism responsible for the apparent late time acceleration of the expansion of the Universe (“dark energy”)
- Test the validity of general relativity on cosmic scales
- Investigate the nature and properties of dark matter by mapping the 3-dimensional dark matter distribution in the Universe
- Refine our understanding of the initial conditions at the beginning of our Universe, which seed the formation of the cosmic structures we see today