ESA selects planet-hunting PLATO mission 19 February 2014 A space-based observatory to search for planets orbiting alien stars has been selected today as ESA's third medium-class science mission. It is planned for launch by 2024. Read more
The Large Observatory for X-ray Timing (LOFT) is a candidate mission for the M3 launch opportunity in ESA's Cosmic Vision programme. LOFT is designed to study the behaviour of matter in close proximity to black holes and neutron stars. High-time-resolution X-ray observations will be used to investigate strong-field gravity, to measure black hole masses and spins, and to study the equation of state of ultra-dense matter.
Cosmic Vision M3 candidate missions presentation event 21 October 2013 The five M3-candidate missions (EChO, LOFT, MarcoPolo-R, PLATO, STE-QUEST) were presented to the scientific community on 21 January 2014, in Paris, France. The presentations given at this event are available to download now. Read more
Announcement of Opportunity for the provision of scientific payload including SGS elements for the M3 mission candidates 24 September 2012 Proposals are solicited for the scientific payload, including Science Ground Segment (SGS) elements, of the M3 candidate missions EChO, LOFT, MarcoPolo-R, and STE-QUEST. The deadline for submission of proposals is 30 November 2012, 12:00 CET. Read more
LOFT Preliminary Requirements Review Technical and Programmatic Report 18 December 2013 Reference: ESA-LOFT-RP-0006, Issue 1, Revision 3. LOFT, a Large Observatory for X-ray Timing, is one of five candidate missions for the M3 launch opportunity. A Preliminary Requirements Review (PRR) of all candidate missions has been performed to review their status in support of the M3 selection. This document reports the results of the technical and programmatic review for the LOFT mission candidate. Read more
LOFT Science Requirements Document 19 September 2012 Reference: SRE-SA/LOFT/2011-001; Issue: 2, Revision 2. This document records the scientific requirements for the Large Observatory for X-ray Timing (LOFT). These are the reference requirements through which the Mission Requirements Document will be derived. Read more
LOFT Mission Requirements Document 11 February 2013 Reference: SRE-F/2012-076/RQ/MA; Issue: 3, Revision: 6. This document aims at providing a complete and comprehensive list of all high level mission requirements (including S/C and payload, launcher, ground segment and operations) necessary to achieve the science goals detailed in the LOFT Science Requirements Document (SRE-SA/LOFT/2011-001, Issue 1, Rev.7). Read more
LOFT Payload Definition Document 09 October 2012 Reference: SRE-PA/2011.088/; Issue:2, Revision: 4. This Payload Definition Document describes the consolidated instrument designs of the Large Area Detector (LAD) and the Wide Field Monitor (WFM) proposed for LOFT. The current issue (2.0) describes the status of the instruments at the time of the Mid-Term Review (MTR) of the LOFT mission study phase. Read more