Press Release

Media Invitation: Herschel and Planck Pre-Launch Press Briefing

By SpaceRef Editor
April 16, 2009
Filed under ,

1st May 2009
Library, Central Hall, Westminster
Storey’s Gate, London, SW1H 9NH
Venue map –
* 09:30 – Registration opens
* 10:00 – Program starts
* 12:30 – Program ends

Scheduled for a joint launch on 6th May, the Herschel and Planck
missions will search the cosmos to unlock some of the greatest
mysteries about the birth and evolution of our Universe. UK
participation is funded by the Science and Technology Facilities
Council (STFC) and scientists and engineers from UK universities,
industry and STFC’s laboratories are playing key roles in designing,
building and interpreting the science from these missions

Press Conference

The press conference will be hosted by Professor Richard Holdaway,
Director STFC Space Science and Technology.

Speakers include:
* Professor David Southwood, ESA Director of Science
* Professor Matt Griffin, Principal Investigator for the
Herschel-SPIRE instrument
* Professor George Efstathiou, HFI Survey Scientist and Planck
Science team member

Media registration:
* Registration form

Herschel — Unlocking the Secrets of Star and Galaxy Formation

The European Space Agency’s Herschel observatory will revolutionize
astronomy by peering through obscuring clouds of dust to look at the
earliest moments of star birth and galaxy formation. Chemical elements
are formed in stars so Herschel will ultimately help astronomers
understand how the materials we are made of were created!

The largest telescope to be flown in space, it will study the long
wavelength infrared light from these astronomical nurseries and the
dust surrounding them, which is not possible from the Earth as the
atmosphere absorbs the radiation.

The UK is leading SPIRE, one of the three sensitive instruments on Herschel.

Planck — Looking Back to the Dawn of Time

Planck is a European Space Agency satellite to study the Cosmic
Microwave Background (CMB) — the relic radiation from the Big Bang.
Its mission is to understand the origin and evolution of our Universe.

Planck will change our understanding of the Universe, testing our
theories of the Big Bang and looking for the seeds of modern day
structures such as galaxies in the subtle variations in the CMB

Julia Short
STFC Press Officer
Tel: +44 (0) 1793 442 012

SpaceRef staff editor.