Next step towards a gravitational wave observatory in space

ESA has invited European scientists to propose concepts for the third large mission in its science programme, to study the gravitational Universe.

Merging Balck Holes. © ESA–C.Carreau

US National Academies recommend NASA should restore support for LISA

The National Academies released their midterm assessment of the Astrophysics Decadal Survey in Washinton DC on 15 August 2016.

Artist's impression of an LISA spacecraft. Image credit: AEI/MM/exozet

LISA Pathfinder Mission exceeds expectations

LISA Pathfinder successfully demonstrates key technologies for gravitational wave observation in space

LPF is testing technology for future gravitational-wave observatories in space. © ESA–C.Carreau

Follow LISA Pathfinder in the Online Mission Journal

LISA Pathfinder mission progress including the LISA Pathfinder Launch Campaign at the European Space Agency

LPF ground clamp-band being replaced for flight clamp-band at Kourou Space Centre. @ ESA-F.Bertini

LISA Pathfinder

LISA Pathfinder

LISA Pathfinder launches successfully on 3 Dec 2015

LISA Pathfinder lifted off from Kourou on VV06

LISA Pathfinder blasts off into low-earth orbit on 3 Dec 2015. ©ESA–Stephane Corvaja, 2015

A New Astronomy

A New Astronomy

Selected: The Gravitational Universe

ESA decided on next Large Mission Concepts

ESA announced a new vision to study the invisible universe and L2 and L3 science concepts

A New Astronomy

A New Astronomy

The Gravitational Universe

Illuminating the dark universe with a new astronomy

Artist's impression of supermassive black hole. Credit: ESA/NASA, AVO project, Paolo Padovani.

Observing gravitational waves

Observing gravitational waves

LISA: A New Astronomy

Laser Interferometer Space Antenna

Artist's impression of LISA satellite. Credit: AEI/MM/exozet

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LISA will be a large-scale space mission designed to detect one of the most elusive phenomena in astronomy - gravitational waves. With LISA we will be able to observe the entire universe directly with gravitational waves, learning about the formation of structure and galaxies, stellar evolution, the early universe, and the structure and nature of spacetime itself.

LISA Pathfinder paves the way for the LISA mission by testing in space the very concept of gravitational wave detection. First results show that LISA Pathfinder is working to a precision five times better than required, successfully demonstrating the key technologies for a large gravitational wave observatory in space. The LISA Pathfinder mission was launched on 3rd December 2015.

LISA Pathfinder Mission Timeline

We have a Mission: One year after LPF launch

On december 3rd 2015 at 04:04 GMT the Lisa Pathfinder satellite lifted off from European Space Agency's space center in Kourou, Guiana. After 10 years of designing, building and testing, LISA Pathfinder had a picture book launch on a Vega rocket which propelled the satellite into a safe low earth orbit for it's further journey to Lagrange point L1 about 1.5 million km from Earth.