Herschel and Planck find missing clue to galaxy cluster formation 31 March 2015 By combining observations of the distant Universe made with ESA's Herschel and Planck space observatories, cosmologists have discovered what could be the precursors of the vast clusters of galaxies that we see today. Read more
The European Space Agency's Herschel Space Observatory (formerly called Far Infrared and Sub-millimetre Telescope or FIRST) has the largest single mirror ever built for a space telescope. At 3.5-metres in diameter the mirror will collect long-wavelength radiation from some of the coldest and most distant objects in the Universe. In addition, Herschel is the only space observatory to cover a spectral range from the far infrared to sub-millimetre.
Herschel's view of the early Universe reveals galaxy cluster fireworks 18 December 2014 Astronomers using ESA's Herschel space observatory have found, for the first time, fireworks of star birth within galaxies at the dense core of a massive early Universe galaxy cluster. This frenzy of star formation reveals the young lives of now "red and dead" elliptical galaxies and gives new clues to the evolution of some of the largest structures in the Universe. Read more
Young sun's violent history solves meteorite mystery 01 July 2014 Astronomers using ESA's Herschel space observatory to probe the turbulent beginnings of a Sun-like star have found evidence of mighty stellar winds that could solve a puzzling meteorite mystery in our own back yard. Read more
Latest Status Reports
Herschel Status Report - June 2013 08 July 2013 Report for period 3 June to 1 July 2013. On 17 June 2013 Herschel operations were concluded, following the last manoeuvre to deplete the spacecraft's fuel and the final passivation of the spacecraft. Herschel has been switched off and is in its final heliocentric orbit. The mission is now in its post-operations phase. Read more
Herschel Status Report - May 2013 07 June 2013 Report for period 30 April to 2 June 2013. The Herschel mission is now moving into the post-operational phase. The main manoeuvre in a series to boost the spacecraft from its operational orbit around L2 of the Sun-Earth system and into its final heliocentric orbit has been successfully performed, on 13-14 May 2013. Read more
Herschel Status Report - April 2013 06 May 2013 Report for period 6 to 29 April 2013. Herschel's long and successful lifetime of scientific observations has come to an end. On 29 April 2013 the spacecraft ran out of liquid helium coolant required to maintain the operational temperatures for the instruments' detectors. Read more