Lecture: Euclid – How to measure dark energy – ESA’s Euclid mission
Lecture by Prof. Mark Cropper (UCL)
Refreshments from 6pm, lecture starts 6.30pm and ends at 8pm.
Location: Harrington Lecture Theatre, Harrington Building, University of Central Lancashire, 11 Victoria St, Preston, PR1 7QS
“Euclid – How to measure dark energy – ESA’s Euclid mission.”
The Euclid mission, to be launched in 2022, is designed to tackle some fundamental questions; why is the expansion of the Universe accelerating and what is the “dark energy” that is thought to drive it? what are the nature and properties of “dark matter”, how is it distributed and how has that changed over the lifetime of the universe? Answers to these questions will dramatically change our view of the universe and have the potential to require that physics textbooks are rewritten.
The Euclid spacecraft will carry two instruments, operating in the visible (VIS) and near-infra-red (NISP) wavebands. These instruments combine a very wide field view and high precision fine resolution measurement capability. Euclid will view 10 billion sources and must measure the gravitational shear in 1 billion distant galaxies to a precision 50 times better than ground-based telescopes can achieve and also determine spectroscopic redshifts for 50 million objects. It will measure objects out to redshift z ~ 2, looking back across 10 billion years. The VIS instrument is being built in Europe, under the leadership of a UK team. The European-led “Euclid Consortium” of more than 1,200 people is responsible for defining the scientific goals, providing the scientific instruments, provision of data processing tools and the analysis of the data to deliver the scientific goals.
The presentation will explain the unique technical challenges of creating a mission to address such demanding goals, describe the contributions of British university and industrial teams, and describe the wide-ranging impact flowing from participation in this mission.