Fact Sheet

LISA Pathfinder is paving the way for future missions by testing in flight the very concept of gravitational wave detection: it will put two test masses in a near-perfect gravitational free-fall and control and measure their motion with unprecedented accuracy. LISA Pathfinder is using the latest technology to minimise the extra forces on the test masses, and to take measurements. The inertial sensors, the laser metrology system, the drag-free control system and an ultra-precise micro-propulsion system make this a highly unusual mission. LISA Pathfinder is an ESA mission, which also carries a NASA payload.

Latest News

Latest News

ESA creates quietest place in space
5 February 2018The LISA Pathfinder mission already outperformed itself in the first week of operations, and now the final report card is in, showing that it even surpassed some of the requirements for its next-generation successor.
LISA Pathfinder wins American Astronautical Society award
24 January 2018ESA's LISA Pathfinder mission has been honoured with the 2017 Space Technology Award of the American Astronautical Society.
LISA Pathfinder to conclude trailblazing mission
20 June 2017After sixteen months of science operations, LISA Pathfinder will complete its mission on 30 June, having successfully demonstrated the technology to build ESA's future space observatory of gravitational waves.
LISA Pathfinder's pioneering mission continues
13 December 2016On 7 December, LISA Pathfinder started the extended phase of its mission, an additional six months during which scientists and engineers will push the experiment to its limits in preparation for ESA's future space observatory of gravitational waves.
The LISA Pathfinder Science Archive is online
7 October 2016Today, ESA's LISA Pathfinder Science Archive opens its virtual gates to the world. It contains data collected by the satellite during the mission's first few months, covering the nominal operations phase of the LISA Technology Package (LTP) – the European payload on LISA Pathfinder.

The Rocket Science Blog - updates from LISA Pathfinder

The Rocket Science Blog - updates from LISA Pathfinder

LISA Pathfinder hunts asteroids
13 July 2017This tiny, perfect mission has not only proven the technology needed to detect gravity waves in the future full LISA mission, it has also gone looking for asteroids!
LISA Pathfinder sails toward the Sun
3 July 2017On 18 July, the LPF mission will conclude with the final commands sent to switch off the on-board transmitter. Since April, the mission operations team in Darmstadt have been working to ensure a safe and smooth end-of-life for this fantastic technology demonstration spacecraft.
LISA Pathfinder still hard at work
30 June 2017So, while main science has ended as of today, there are still a few weeks until final shutdown on 18 July. What do you do with a perfectly functioning spacecraft? Why, you use it for testing, of course – especially the sort of testing that can't normally be done during routine science operations.
All LISA Pathfinder blog updates
27 November 2015Follow this link for a list of all the LISA Pathfinder updates on the Rocket Science Blog.

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From Our Partners

NASA's LISA Pathfinder Thrusters Operated Successfully
25 January 2016While some technologies were created to make spacecraft move billions of miles, the Disturbance Reduction System has the opposite goal: To keep a spacecraft as still as possible.

LISA Pathfinder launch campaign

LISA Pathfinder launch campaign

#4: Hidden from view
18 November 2015With only fourteen days to go until the launch of LISA Pathfinder on 2 December, preparations continue according to plan, and this week has seen another two major milestones passed: fitting the launch vehicle adapter to the spacecraft, and enclosing the spacecraft in the fairing.
#3: ESOC, do you copy?
29 October 2015For the past week and a half, the high bay, a large integration hall in the south side of the payload integration building (EPCU S5C), at the Centre Spatial Guyanais in Kourou has been buzzing with activities around the LISA Pathfinder spacecraft.
12-Nov-2019 18:36 UT

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https://sci.esa.int/lisa-pathfinder

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