Euclid blasts off in attempt to discover dark matter and dark energy -.

The European Space Agency has launched its spacecraft, the Euclid. Designed with the goal of unraveling the mysteries of dark matter and dark energy, the spacecraft was launched into space by the SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket on Saturday, July 1.

The spacecraft, named after the Greek mathematician, features a 600-megapixel camera that astronomers will use to document and record a third of the night sky within the next six years. It will then also use a near-infrared spectrometer and photometer to measure the redshift of galaxies, in an effort to see how Albert Einstein’s theory of relativity works on a cosmic scale.

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Carole Mundell, ESA scientific director, said of the launch, “If we want to understand the universe we live in, we must discover the nature of dark matter and dark energy and understand the role they played in shaping our cosmos. To address these fundamental questions, Euclid will provide the most detailed map of the extra-galactic sky. This invaluable wealth of data will also enable the scientific community to explore many other aspects of astronomy, for years to come.”

Over the next four weeks, Euclid will travel about 1.5 million km from Earth before being maneuvered into orbit so that a two-month testing and calibration phase can begin.

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Euclid blasts off in attempt to discover dark matter and dark energy

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