Space exploration: Euclid telescope and its mission to search for “dark matter” and “dark energy”

Image source, ESA/EUCLID/NASA consortium


Spiral galaxy IC342, also nicknamed “hidden galaxies,” is not easy to spot. Because it is located in a distant part of the Milky Way Galaxy.

The European Space Agency’s (ESA) Euclidean Space Telescope is on a mission to uncover and understand the greatest mysteries of the universe.

Within the next 6 years from now, the Euclid Telescope will survey a third of the universe. To search for clues about “dark matter” and “dark energy” that appear to play a role in controlling the shape and expansion of the universe.

Although nowadays researchers and space explorers agree on this I still don’t know much about them. Although these two mysteries may be the building blocks of 95% of the universe,

Neither dark matter nor dark energy can be detected directly. But scientists hope to understand it by tracking its faint signals from what we can see.

This is the mission of the Euclid Space Telescope. To observe the shapes, distances and movements of billions of galaxies, the light of some of these galaxies took nearly as long as the universe to reach our planet.

With the full capabilities of the Euclid Camera it can create the largest 3D map of the sky ever. It may help scientists find clearer answers about dark matter and dark energy.

Image source, ESA/EUCLID/NASA consortium


The Horsehead Nebula is a large cloud of gas and dust from which stars are born. It is located only 1,300 light-years from Earth, and many currently available telescopes are already capable of recording this image. But there is still no camera that can take images as wide and sharp as Euclid’s camera.

Professor Carol Mundell, Director of the European Space Agency, said that space exploration with the Euclid Telescope answers fundamental questions that humans have.

“We are humans who want to understand everything around us, regardless of the era. The ancients also looked at the night sky and drew constellations on the walls of caves. Or try to understand that does the sun return after winter? We are looking for knowledge,” she told the BBC. And visions about different things.”

“So far, we still don’t understand the remaining 95% of the universe, which is about 13.8 billion years old. But we can be the kind that can understand everything.

Dark matter and dark energy are two of the biggest mysteries in modern astrophysics.

Dark matter may be a particle that has not yet been discovered. Astronomers infer their existence from their strong gravitational pull on visible matter, and galaxies might drift apart from each other if they weren’t there.

Solving the answer about dark energy is a separate problem. It could be a kind of energy in the vacuum of space. Whatever it is appears to be resisting gravitational pull and causing galaxies to separate at an increasing rate.

Perseus group of galaxies

Image source, ESA/EUCLID/NASA consortium


Perseus galaxy cluster It is one of the most gigantic structures in the universe. There are more than 1,000 galaxies in this image, and behind this image there are tens of thousands of other galaxies. Light from some galaxies takes more than 10 billion years to reach us.

The Euclid telescope, worth more than 1.2 billion euros (about 45.6 billion baht), traveled into space in July, and engineers have been fine-tuning the telescope since then.

In the early days, there were many concerns, such as the inability of exposure equipment to lock onto a still image. This requires installing new software for the telescope’s high-precision navigation sensors.

The engineers also found that some stray light can also cause images to appear blurry when the image is rotated in certain directions. But this problem has been fixed. Now the Euclidean camera is ready to go. The important evidence is that the five latest photos were revealed on Tuesday.

“It’s amazing,” said Professor Isobel Hook, who worked with the scientists in the 1990s who first discovered this. The universe is expanding at an ever-accelerating rate.

“I finally saw the high-resolution images last Monday. Which made me even more surprised. We had expected the Euclidean camera to perform well and the results were exactly as expected. I feel relieved and relieved that this was the result,” said the Lancaster University astronomer.

Star cluster NGC 6397

Image source, ESA/EUCLID/NASA consortium


NGC 6397, also known as a globular cluster located just 7,800 light-years from Earth, is considered an ancient star cluster. Some stars are as old as the universe, so they are considered fossils or fossils of the universe. Which tells the history of galaxies like our Milky Way.

For the performance of the Euclid camera so far, no other telescope can capture images as wide, deep and clear as the Euclid telescope.

Even the James Webb Space Telescope, although it can record images at a higher resolution, cannot record images covering the sky with the width of a Euclidean camera in recording each image.

“This wide-field camera, capable of recording hundreds of millions of pixels of images, is ready to explore the distant universe, including celestial bodies in the vast universe,” said Professor Mark McCorrion.

“It’s just looking at a lot of galaxies. This will allow us to detect subtle signals from dark energy and dark matter. The Euclid Camera is designed for this mission,” he told the BBC.

Galaxy NGC 6822

Image source, ESA/EUCLID/NASA consortium


Evolving galaxies like the Milky Way and IC 342 have been found to have curved arms resembling a beautiful spiral pattern. But galaxy NGC 6822 is an example of an unusual galaxy. The shape of which cannot be determined, even though this galaxy is relatively close to Earth, and is about 1.6 million light years away from us.

Engineering challenges

Image source, ESA/EUCLID/NASA consortium


This image is not a photo of an alien galaxy taken by the Euclidean telescope. But it was an image taken during early testing of the camera, which still suffered from technical issues of not being able to lock the camera on the target star. The camera wobbled erratically until engineers installed new software. This makes the camera work as it should.

Image source, TASS


Artist’s drawing: It will take the Euclid Space Telescope another six years to compile a 3D map of a third of space. By integrating images in width, depth and clarity of vision together. This capability allows it to capture large areas of space in a single image.

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