Posted on 24 April 2014 by emily
The Gaia project team provides an update on the ongoing commissioning activities of ESA’s billion star surveyor… The work done to bring online all components of the Gaia service module, which houses equipment needed for the basic...
Posted on 4 April 2014 by mareike
Gaia Live in School: Inspiring the next generation of E...
Will Gaia discover planets that humans would be able to live on? What is a quasar? How many people are actually working on the mission at the moment? These are just some of the varied questions that...
Posted on 3 April 2014 by emily
As part of the ongoing commissioning activities of Gaia, the satellite’s Sky Mapper has briefly been used in a special mode to image a patch of the sky close to the Galactic plane (below). The job of...
Posted on 4 March 2014 by emily
Gaia tilt watched from Earth
As part of the tests to try and diagnose the stray light issue noticed in the first month of instrument commissioning, the Gaia operations team is making a series of spacecraft orientation changes. The spacecraft was first...
Posted on 12 February 2014 by Kourou Project Team
One month at L2
Gaia has been in its operational orbit around L2 for about a month now, where it is undergoing a very rigorous test programme before starting on its main science observations. Like many relocations, it can take some...
Posted on 14 January 2014 by mareike
From cleanroom to liftoff, watch an incredible time-lapse movie of Gaia's final preparations on Earth before shooting for the stars.
Posted on 8 January 2014 by mareike
Journey to a billion suns
A new planetarium show, Journey to a billion Suns, premieres today in Hamburg, Germany, to tell the fascinating story of mapping the Milky Way, from ancient times to ESA’s recently launched Gaia mission. Watch the trailer: Read...
Posted on 8 January 2014 by Daniel
… and we got there!
ESA’s billion-star surveyor Gaia is now in its operational orbit around a gravitationally stable virtual point in space called ‘L2’, 1.5 million km from Earth. Via ESA web
Posted on 7 January 2014 by Daniel
The flight dynamics expertise behind Gaia’s criti...
Today is a big day for the flight dynamics experts who determine and predict trajectories, prepare orbit manoeuvres and determine satellite attitudes. At around 19:58 CET this evening, five of Gaia's eight thrusters will be commanded to...
Posted on 20 December 2013 by Daniel
#FirstVideo: Gaia seen in space
Last night, Nick James, based in the UK, captured some fantastic views of Gaia as it departed Earth en route to L2, about 1.5 million km away from Earth opposite the Sun. The video acquired at about 01:00 GMT this morning. (Editor's note: Several other very good images have just been shared and we'll get them posted as soon as possible.) Well done, Nick! And thanks for sharing! Nick wrote: Time lapse movie of the Gaia spacecraft taken using a C11 telescope and an ST9XE CCD camera. Each frame is a 5-second exposure and the animation is played at 25 fps. At the time the images were taken, Gaia was around 158...
Posted on 19 December 2013 by mareike
Gaia liftoff – watch replay highlights
Watch the replay highlights of today's webcast of ESA's billion-star surveyor Gaia launching into space. Lift off took place at 09:12 GMT / 10:12 CET this morning. This video includes highlights of the launch webcast including lift-off from Kourou, the Soyuz mission, separation of Gaia and the successful entry into orbit. Like to see the entire webcast replay? Access the full video in the ESA website.
Posted on 19 December 2013 by Daniel
AOS: Acquisition of signal at ESOC confirmed
What the Gaia mission operations team at ESOC have waited to see! The bottom image shows the tracking station signal being received from ESA's 15m Perth station, Australia; loud and clear. ESA is now in contact with...