SpaceX puts Euclid Telescope into orbit to study Dark Matter
SpaceX announces that the Euclid Telescope has entered orbit as the company hopes to create the most detailed 3D map of the universe.
SpaceX's Falcon 9 rocket successfully launched the Euclid space telescope of the European Space Agency (ESA) from Cape Canaveral in Florida.
The launch occurred at 15:11 GMT, and shortly afterward, SpaceX confirmed the landing of the first-stage rocket. Approximately 40 minutes later, they verified the successful deployment of the telescope into orbit.
SpaceX stated that the Euclid telescope, a European spacecraft, will spend the next six years unraveling the mysteries surrounding dark matter and dark energy.
Initially, the plan was to launch the Euclid telescope using Russia's Soyuz ST launch vehicle from the EU's spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, in late 2022.
However, due to the European Space Agency's decision to end cooperation with Roscosmos following Russia's special military operation in Ukraine in February 2022, they opted to carry out the launch with an American company. On the other hand, Roscosmos responded to the sanctions imposed by EU countries on Russian space companies by terminating cooperation in organizing launches from the Guiana Space Center.
SpaceX has also provided Ukrainian forces with its satellite internet technology, Starlink, which has been key in providing essential comms for the military.
The company accused Ukrainian forces of using its technology for "offensive purposes" late in February 2023.
"Ukrainians have leveraged it in ways that were unintentional and not part of any agreement," said Gwynne Shotwell, the company's president.
Musk first announced sending the satellite system in March 2022, less than a month after the beginning of the war, and since then, Ukraine has received more than 20,000 satellite internet terminals.
The Ukrainian army has immensely benefited from the terminals by connecting its drones to attack Russian forces, while SpaceX claims that it has prohibited the weaponization of Starlink.