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Euclid Mission

Scroll to the bottom of the page to read about the he latest project developments and current Target activities related to the Euclid Mission.

Two concepts for the Euclid satellite. Image credit: ESA
Two concepts for the Euclid satellite. Image credit: ESA

In October 2011, after intense three-year competition with fifty other mission proposals, the European Space Agency (ESA) selected Euclid as one of its first science missions to be part of the ESA's Cosmic Vision Plan.

Expected to launch in 2019, Euclid satellite will be equipped with state-of-the-art instrumentation to (i) map the large-scale structure of the Universe, (ii) study dark matter and dark energy to gain better understanding of the forces that govern the increasing rate of expansion of the Universe, and (iii) test the validity of existing cosmological models.

For the next seven years after its launch, Euclid will generate optical and infrared images with unprecedented quality for large sections of the extragalactic sky covering over a billion galaxies. Combined with observational data from other existing ground-based optical surveys, Euclid Mission Archive (EMA) opens up a myriad of possibilities for high-quality, transformational science. It is this archive and the associated enabling processing, storage and data handling facilities that Target is going to develop in collaboration with ESA and other partners of the Euclid Consortium.

Euclid is expected to deliver much more data than any of the previous missions of ESA. These data will be stored and processed in a distributed Euclid Archive System (EAS), hosted by a number of national science data centers. The EAS will be developed by Target in close co-operation with ESA. The archive prototype will be located in Groningen and it will use the processing and storage facilities of the Target infrastructure. Apart from that, the Target expertise in data-intensive scientific projects will play an integral part in:

  • developing the underlying software and system infrastructure for the distributed EAS (together with ESA)
  • developing the processing and storage infrastructure needed to support integration of survey data from ground-based stations to EAS
  • developing data reduction and calibration algorithms (pipelines) for the infrared Euclid data

The design, building and maintenance of the EAS infrastructure and associated complex information system poses a lot of challenges, but it also provides an ideal platform, where the collective Target knowledge can grow and mature. We anticipate that our industry partners will facilitate the spill over of the newly gained expertise and insights into other areas of research and development in which the role of ICT technology continues to rise.

Latest project developments

Currently, OmegaCEN/Target leads the national contribution to the Science Ground Segment of the Euclid space mission. The Target coordinator, Prof. Edwin A. Valentijn is appointed as the National project manager with the role of liaising the national developments of the project to the Dutch funding agencies. Target also leads the Euclid Consortium (EC) team which will collaborate with ESA in the development of the Euclid Archive System (EAS). A prototype EAS system, hosted on the Target infrastructure and based on the WISE technology is already providing services to the Euclid consortium. A definition of the preliminary requirements for the Science Ground Segment of Euclid has been prepared and recently approved at the Preliminary Requirements Review.

In addition, Target and OmegaCEN co-lead the establishment of the system to provide the Euclid External Survey data. Initial steps include the definitions of preliminary requirements for the production environment including

  • ingestion of external catalogs
  • data processing
  • testing and validation of survey production system and algorithms
  • quality control, data-lineage and monitoring
  • external survey cataloging operations
  • inter-survey homogenization and more.
Last modified:02 October 2015 10.52 p.m.