Saturday, October 22, 2011

Supertelescopes Herschel and Planck have gone to space

On May, 14th, 2009, at 17:12 Moscow time two European telescopes Herschel and Planck successfully started from the cosmodrome the Hen onboard Ariane 5 carrier rocket. The devices, managed to Europe in a total sum of 1,9 billion euro, urged to collect many the new information on an origin and evolution of the Universe and, probably, to find signs of the Multiuniverse and traces of events to a Big Bang. To the telescopes named names of great scientists, it is necessary to leave into the a bit excellent orbits round a point of Lagranzha L2, on what some weeks will leave. Then these companions really will open the new chapter in observant astronomy.  Herschel is the largest telescope deduced in space. Its main mirror has diameter of 3,5 metres. It thus weighs only 350 kgs as it is executed from silicon carbide. Larger mirror James Vebba's space telescope (James Webb Space Telescope) will possess only, but that starts only in 2013, besides the range of perceived frequencies at it is not blocked with that at "Gershelja". Last is interesting also by cooling system. The tank with superfluid helium freezes the central part of the device to 1,65 degrees kelvina, and telescope detectors will directly work at temperature only 0,3 To!
All it will allow to fix with unprecedented accuracy the weak waves coming from remote corners of space (so - from the remote past). Will work Herschel in the distant infra-red and submillimetric areas of a spectrum well punching interstellar clouds of a dust and gas. Scientists expect to glance with its help in such past of the Universe when to it was five times less years, than now and when intensively there were first stars.

"Gershel" (above, as is shown in this drawing, it the first will separate from the top missile stage) and "Planck" (below). Both telescopes are made by trans-European company Thales Alenia Space (known to us on mission on Tsereru) with the assistance of hundred subcontractors, including the well-known giant EADS Astrium. This pair companions is the most expensive useful loading in the history of the European space agency, ever established on one rocket (illustrations and photo ESA).

Planck it urged to spend the most detailed shooting of the microwave space background which has remained after a Big Bang. The detailed card of this background is capable to tell to astronomers about structure of the early Universe. It already the third in the history the space vehicle sent into an orbit with such task. But its devices - the most sensitive, and a range of perceived frequencies in this part of a spectrum - the biggest.
The main mirror at "Planck" is more modest (1,9 h 1,5 metres). It from uglevolokonnogo the plastic covered with an ultrathin and supersmooth layer of aluminium with factor of reflexion of 99,5 % is executed. The telescope is equipped by set of the screens closing it from a thermal flare from the Sun, the Moon and the Earth. Its working temperature will make 40 K.Kak researchers of space believe, Planck will help to specify essentially both age of the Universe, and its geometry, and evolution at early stages. Will throw light on the so-called inflationary period - "superlight" expansion of the Universe during its first instants of life.
Moreover, the leading scientist of mission of "Planck", professor George Efstatajou (George Efstathiou) from Cambridge (University of Cambridge), speaks about a new telescope: "We will use modes which have been never presented, there, where the studied physics very much, very uncertain. Probably, we could find signatures of events to a Big Bang, or even signatures of other Universe. And then we would receive experimental that proof that we are the Multiuniverse part".

Point L2 is located in 1,5 million kilometres over the centre of a night hemisphere of the Earth.
Below: the main mirror of a telescope of "Gershel" (an illustration and photo ESA).

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