Sunday, July 21, 2024

Even Polycene in deep space with Euclid’s satellite

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Rovigo – An astronomer from Polissene is also on the Italian team involved in the Euclid mission. It’s about Robin Farinelli who recounted the feelings he felt…

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Rovigo – There is also a file astronomer Bolzano participated in the Italian team in the Euclid mission. around Robin Farinelliwho recounted the feelings he felt when he knew that a “piece” of himself had flown into space through the equipment he had helped build.

«After I worked at Enav Padova with Roberto Ragazoni, moved to Bologna office. I can say that I have been working on this task for seven years. I was blown away by seeing the satellite lift off from Cape Canaveral, one of the most famous launch bases ever. The space telescope trip was something unique and special.”

light on dark matter
Euclid He will have the task of shedding light on a hidden part of the universe; The European view will be on the dark matter of the universe. In the 10 years that Euclid turned from project to reality, dozens of scientists and engineers at INAF designed and programmed all the commands needed to power the two machines — Vis and Nisp — to process data and images and then send them back to Earth. The work never stopped, not even in the last few days, as final details needed to be revised, as well as program reworked. «In Padua we wrote the program Dpu, i.e. Data Processing Unit – explains Farinelli – one of the subsystems that deals with acquiring and processing scientific data in flight, namely images and spectra of galaxies, from Nisp, i.e. near-infrared spectrophotometer and photometer, one of the two instruments on board Euclid. As for the satellite as a whole, once it reaches its destination, it will not revolve around the Earth, but around the Lagrangian point L2, which is located 1.5 million km from the Earth, in the opposite direction from the Sun. In this orbit, the satellite will always return to the sun and the instruments will operate in a certain sense in the shade, at very low temperatures (about -180 degrees); At the same time, the solar panels will power the on-board electronics.”
Robin Farinelli explains what an Astrophysical and Space Science Observatory is all about. “With great relief, I am part of a European Space Agency mission that will study the evolution of galaxies in the universe, exploiting the optical and infrared range. We will move on to discovering not only visible matter, that is, that which emits radiation (5% normal matter, 25% dark matter with gravitational effects), but also dark matter equal to 70% of the total, the existence of which was discovered at the end of the 1990s. Euclid will study the evolution of galaxies and the evolution of dark matter and energy. Until last year, the satellite should have been launched from French Guiana with the Russians, but due to the ongoing conflict, an agreement was reached with Space X, Elon Musk’s company, in less than a year.”
The mission, run by Esap, is mainly French, followed by Italy and other European countries. The cost was 1.2 billion euros, which was found from the European Space Agency’s budget.

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Launch emotion
«The beginnings of the project go back to 2007 – concludes Farinelli – at that time there were two missions, which later became one; The name assigned to it honors the great Greek mathematician. I watched the launch on Saturday July 1 at 5 p.m. Italian from Aula Magna of the University of Astronomy in Bologna. The seconds immediately before the launch are the ones with the greatest tension. It felt different from the other versions, which I personally didn’t work for, I experienced this with great involvement. The launch was a complete success, as was the recovery of the first stage over the ocean. Now we wait to see what Euclid will send us.

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In Il Gazzettino

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