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Default ESA GAIA mission updates
by Notebook 08-01-2009, 10:05 AM

http://sci.esa.int/science-e/www/obj...objectid=45330

Haven't heard much about this. Looks like the L2 position is going to get busy.

http://sci.esa.int/science-e/www/are...cfm?fareaid=26

N.

Last edited by Galactic Penguin SST; 11-23-2013 at 08:21 AM. Reason: Better thread title for a mission updates thread
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Old 08-01-2009, 10:16 AM   #2
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There are quite a few missions planned for L2 in the near future... we're gonna need collision avoidance systems up there pretty soon


Edit: Is that the mission that measures distance of objects using parallax? Man... that thing is precise...
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Old 08-01-2009, 10:27 AM   #3
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TNO Science and Industry and the Leibniz Institute of Surface Modification (IOM) are developing processes for finishing strongly curved off axis parabolic SiC mirrors. The mirrors form a crucial part of the cryogenic fibre collimators for the Gaia Basic Angle Monitoring Opto-Mechanical Assembly (BAM OMA).


The Gaia BAM OMA is a double Michelson interferometer which measures the basic angle between the two telescopes with an accuracy of better than 0.5 microarcseconds. The Gaia BAM OMA consists of two SiC optical benches with fibre collimators, beam splitters and a large number of folding mirrors.
Well, that makes it clear

Plasma and mirrors, you'd think they wouldn't mix?
http://www.rssd.esa.int/index.php?pr...re_of_the_week

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Old 08-01-2009, 10:30 AM   #4
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0.5 MICROarcsecond? Jeez...
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Old 09-17-2012, 10:23 AM   #5
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ESA:
Gaia’s instruments installed and ready for testing

17 September 2012

The payload module of ESA’s billion-star surveyor Gaia is integrated and ready for the next stage of rigorous testing it must undergo before launch next year.

Once in space, Gaia will make precise measurements of the positions and motions of a billion stars. The information will be used to create a 3D map of stars in our home Galaxy, the Milky Way, revealing information about its composition, formation and evolution.

Click on image to enlarge
Fully integrated Gaia payload module with nearly all of the multilayer insulation fabric installed. Nearest to the camera, the rear of one of the primary mirrors and one of the tertiary mirrors are visible. Beneath the tertiary (smaller) mirror, the Radial Velocity Spectrometer can be seen. To the right is the Focal Plane Assembly with its charge-coupled device sensors (blue). The focal plane array, with a total of almost a billion pixels, is the largest ever developed. The integration was carried out at Astrium, Toulouse.
Credits: Astrium SAS


This latest image shows the payload module in the Astrium cleanroom in Toulouse, France.

The module is covered in grey and silver multilayer insulation fabric that protects the spacecraft’s optics and mirrors from the cold environment of space.

Nearest to the camera, the rear of one of Gaia’s main telescope mirrors and one of the tertiary mirrors are visible. The second main mirror is just visible towards the back left of the image.

The blue panel seen below and to the right of the image is the Focal Plane Assembly with its charge-coupled device sensors.

This focal plane array will carry the largest digital camera ever built, with nearly a billion pixels.

The integration process included the Radial Velocity Spectrometer (seen below the smaller mirror), which will help to measure the motions of stars, and the Basic Angle Monitor, which will ensure that the separation angle between the two telescopes is monitored in order to make precise distance measurements of stars. All of the optical components were also carefully aligned.

The payload module will be mated to the service module, which houses units that provide resources such as thermal control, propulsion, communication, and attitude and orbit control, at the beginning of next year.

Gaia will be launched from Europe’s Spaceport in French Guiana at the end of 2013.

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Old 09-20-2012, 04:09 PM   #6
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Universe Today: Gaia Mission Passes Vital Tests
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Old 08-22-2013, 10:23 PM   #7
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Default ESA's Gaia star survey telescope mission

Some interesting info
http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/science-environment-23779294

Last edited by Galactic Penguin SST; 09-03-2013 at 07:33 AM. Reason: Converted the thread for future mission updates
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Old 08-22-2013, 11:39 PM   #8
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What an awesome project. That's some major solid-state imaging array!
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Old 08-23-2013, 12:41 AM   #9
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May this mighty descendant of the Almighty Probe travel swiftly, with accuracy and precision. May all its parts be designed well, and be crafted within acceptable tolerances. HAIL PROBE!
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Old 10-22-2013, 01:14 PM   #11
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ESA: Countdown to launch of ESA's billion-star surveyor
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Old 10-22-2013, 05:52 PM   #12
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ESA: Gaia launch postponed:
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22 October 2013

Due to recently-discovered technical issues, ESA has decided to perform additional verifications on its Gaia satellite, and therefore we have requested that Arianespace postpone the Gaia launch, currently scheduled for November 20, 2013.

A new launch date will be announced as soon as the availability of the satellite is confirmed.
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Old 10-24-2013, 02:36 PM   #13
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ESA: Gaia launch postponement update:
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23 October 2013

Yesterday, the decision was taken to postpone the launch of ESA’s Gaia mission after a technical issue was identified in another satellite already in orbit.

Gaia shares some of the components involved in this technical issue and prompt notification of this problem has allowed engineers working on the final preparations for Gaia’s launch to take additional precautionary measures.

The issue concerns components used in two transponders on Gaia that generate ‘timing signals’ for downlinking the science telemetry. To avoid potential problems, they will be replaced.

The transponders will be removed from Gaia at Kourou and returned to Europe, where the potentially faulty components will be replaced and verified. After the replacements have been made, the transponders will be refitted to Gaia and a final verification test made.

As a consequence of these precautionary measures, it will not be possible to launch Gaia within the window that includes the previously targeted launch date of 20 November.

The next available launch window is 17 December to 5 January 2014.

More details will be given as soon as they are available. The new launch date will be announced when the timeline for completing the additional work has been confirmed and the overall launch manifest of Arianespace has been established.

{...}
EADS Astrium: From Hipparcos to Gaia

Flightglobal: Electronics concerns delay Gaia launch

Space News: Component Alert Forces ESA To Postpone Gaia Launch

Phys.org: Gaia launch postponement update

Spaceflight Now: Launch of Gaia galaxy survey probe slips to late December

AmericaSpace: Ambitious Gaia Billion-Object Astronomy Mission Delayed Until NET Mid-December
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Old 10-29-2013, 02:13 PM   #14
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Arianespace: Arianespace launches VA216 and VS06 scheduled respectively for December 6 and 20:
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Evry, October 29, 2013

To allow the Gaia program to carry out additional checks on its satellite, Arianespace has switched the order of its two upcoming launches, with full agreement of its customers, moving the Ariane 5 ECA mission for SES and Hispasat ahead of the Soyuz launch for ESA.

Arianespace is now able to announce the planned dates of its next two launches, thanks to the combined efforts of the teams in charge of preparing the Gaia, ASTRA 5B and AMAZONAS 4A satellites, the teams in charge of the Ariane 5 and Soyuz launchers and the staff at the Guiana Space Center, CNES in particular, responsible for optimizing launch preparations:
  • VA216 – Ariane 5 ECA – Astra 5B and Amazonas 4A – December 6

  • VS06 – Soyuz – Gaia – December 20

{...}
Space News: Next Ariane 5 To Launch a Week Early To Allow Mid-December Launch of ESA’s Star-mapping Gaia Craft
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Old 10-30-2013, 01:54 PM   #15
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