Europe has launched its latest satellite – charged with taking scientific endeavor sky-high.
Gaia lifted off from French Guiana at 10.12 CET and is one of the most ambitious space missions ever.
It’s hoped when it is fully operational, astronomers will be able to give an unparalleled and first realistic map of our Milky Way galaxy.
Launched with a payload of two high-powered telescopes, satellite Gaia has already detached from its Russian made Soyuz rocket.
It’s a project that’s 20 years in the making, but developers will have to wait another month before tests begin, as the technology takes a 1.5 million km trip into space.
Once in position its billion pixel camera will be employed to measure the distance between stars in the Milky Way, and hopefully find new some new planets and asteroids at the same time.
With the power to identify the width of a single human hair at 1000km, their star spotter will even try to catalogue the temperature, composition and age of objects in deep space.