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Calling AI experts! Join the hunt for exoplanets
ARIEL DATA CHALLENGE 2022 has launched!

Artificial Intelligence (AI) experts have been challenged to help a new space mission to investigate Earth’s place in the universe.

The Ariel Data Challenge 2022, which launches on 30th June, is inviting AI and machine learning experts from industry and academia to help astronomers understand planets outside our solar system, known as exoplanets.

The competition

Participants are free to use any model, algorithm, data pre-processing technique or other tools to provide a solution. They may submit as many solutions as they like and collaborations between teams are welcomed.

For the first time, this year the competition is also offering 20 participants access to High Powered Computing resource through DiRAC, part of the UK’s Science and Technology Facilities Council’s computing facilities.

Winners will be invited to present their solution at the prestigious NeurIPS conference. First prize winning teams will be awarded $2,000 and second prize winners will receive $500.

Winners will also be invited to present their solution to the Ariel consortium.

The competition is supported by the UK Space Agency, European Research Council, European Space Agency and Europlanet Society.

More details about the competition and how to take part can be found on the Ariel Data Challenge website

Follow @ArielTelescope for more updates

To continue reading the full Ariel press release, click HERE

Ariel Data Challenge Logo

ESA member states sign new Ariel collaboration agreement

European Space Agency (ESA) member states have signed a new agreement on 8 June to confirm roles for the Ariel mission.   

The agreement between ESA member states ensures that the work taking place across the consortium continues to be supported by their national agencies.

A payload design review will be completed later this year, with the design expected to be finalised by 2025. A flight acceptance review will be completed in early 2029 ahead of launch later that year.

Ariel press release: HERE
UK Space Agency Press Release: HERE

Ariel Postdoctoral Fellows 2022

The Ariel Postdoctoral Fellowship Program seeks outstanding early-career scientists to carry out research programs that will support the Ariel mission. Each fellowship position is expected to involve a high degree of independent research, although projects that help build new collaborations among the Ariel Science Consortium are especially encouraged.

Three Ariel Postdoctoral Fellowships have been awarded by University of Chalmers and University of Vienna, after a very competitive process and selection.

Huge congratulations and a warm welcome to Gopal, Oliver and Niloofar – Meet the Ariel fellows!

Airbus will build ESA’s Ariel exoplanet satellite

The European Space Agency (ESA) and Airbus have signed a contract to move forward with the design and construction of the Atmospheric Remote-sensing Infrared Exoplanet Large-survey (Ariel). Work on the Ariel payload module by the Ariel Mission Consortium is already well underway and the two teams will be working closely together to deliver the mission for launch in 2029.

“The international Ariel Mission Consortium been making fantastic progress with the payload. We are looking forward to working closely with Airbus to ensure the payload works perfectly on board the spacecraft. Together we will be enabling amazing new discoveries about planets beyond our Solar System” said Paul Eccleston, Ariel Mission Consortium Project Manager and RAL Space Chief Engineer.

The contract was celebrated between the two parties with a small ceremony at ESA headquarters in Paris on 6 December.

Ariel press release HERE
ESA announcement HERE

Artist impression of ESA’s Ariel exoplanet satellite. Credit: Airbus.

Ariel, the Atmospheric Remote-sensing Infrared Exoplanet Large-survey, was selected as the fourth medium-class mission in ESA’s Cosmic Vision programme. During its 4-year mission, Ariel will study what exoplanets are made of, how they formed and how they evolve, by surveying a diverse sample of about 1000 extrasolar planets, simultaneously in visible and infrared wavelengths. It is the first mission dedicated to measuring the chemical composition and thermal structures of hundreds of transiting exoplanets, enabling planetary science far beyond the boundaries of the Solar System.

The Ariel mission page on ESA’s website can be accessed here.

See Ariel videos in different languages – try clicking a flag!

Austria
France
Japan
Portugal
Czech Republic
Hungary
Netherlands
Spain
Estonia
Italy
Poland
United States

Publications

ARIEL DEFINITION STUDY REPORT:
November 2020: Link to ESA document ; arxiv:2104.04824
ARIEL ASSESSMENT STUDY REPORT:
March 2017
ARIEL YELLOW BOOK TECHNICAL NOTES:
Link to all Technical Notes
ARIEL SCIENTIFIC PROPOSAL & OUTCOME OF ESA CDF STUDY:
Link to ESA website

Ariel Special Issue in Experimental Astronomy: coming soon!

Barnes, J.R. et al. Exoplanet mass estimation for a sample of targets for the Ariel mission; doi: 10.1007/s10686-021-09758-0

Barstow, J. et al. A retrieval challenge exercise for the Ariel mission;

Boldizsár, G. I. et al., Ancillary science with Ariel: Feasibility and scientific potential of young stellar object observations, https://arxiv.org/abs/2103.09601.

Borsato L. et al., Exploiting the transit timing capabilities of Ariel; doi: 10.1007/s10686-021-09737-5 .

Brucalassi, A. et al. Determination of stellar parameters for Ariel targets: a comparison analysis between different spectroscopic methods; DOI:10.1007/s10686-020-09695-4.

Changeat, Q., et al. Disentangling Atmospheric Compositions of K2-18 b with Next Generation Facilities. arXiv:2003.01486.

Charnay, B. et al. A survey of exoplanet phase curves with Ariel; doi: 10.1007/s10686-021-09715-x

Chioetto, P . et al. Qualification of the thermal stabilization, polishing and coating procedures for the aluminum telescope mirrors of the Ariel mission;

Danielski, C. et al. The homogeneous characterisation of Ariel host stars; doi: 10.1007/s10686-021-09765-1

Demangeon, O. et al. Need, Scale and Feasibility of an Ariel radial velocity campaign;

Encrenaz, T. et al. Observability of temperate exoplanets with Ariel; in press

Ferus M. et al. Ariel – a window to the origin of life on early Earth?, doi: 10.1007/s10686-020-09681-w

Focardi, M. et al. The Ariel Instrument Control Unit its role within the Payload and B1 Phase design; doi: 10.1007/s10686-020-09694-5.

Garai, Z. et al. Grazing, non-transiting disintegrating exoplanets observed with the planned Ariel space observatory A case study using Kepler-1520b; doi: 10.1007/s10686-021-09750-8

Garcia Perez, A. et al. Thermoelastic evaluation of the Payload Module of the Ariel mission;
doi: 10.1007/s10686-021-09704-0.

Guilluy, G. et al. On The Synergy Between Ariel and Ground-Based High-Resolution Spectroscopy; 

Gyürüs, B. et al. Ancillary science with ARIEL: feasibility and scientific potential of young stellar object observations; doi:10.1007/s10686-021-09742-8

Haswell, C. A. Extended Use of the Ariel Core Survey Data;

Helled, R. et al. Ariel Planetary Interiors White Paper; doi: 10.1007/s10686-021-09739-3

Ito, Y. et al. Detectability of mineral atmospheres with Ariel; doi:10.1007/s10686-020-09693-6

Kokori A. et al. ExoClock Project: An open platform for monitoring the ephemerides of Ariel targets with contributions from the public; doi:10.1007/s10686-020-09696-3

Morales, J.C. et al. Ariel scheduling using Artificial Intelligence;

Morello, G. et al. The Ariel 0.6 – 7.8 μm stellar limb- darkening coefficients; doi:10.1007/s10686-021-09740-w

Morgante, G. et al. The thermal architecture of the ESA Ariel payload at the end of Phase B1;

Moses, J.I. et al. Chemical variation with altitude and longitude on exo-Neptunes: Predictions for Ariel phase- curve observations; doi:10.1007/s10686-021-09749-1.

Pearson C. et al. The Ariel Ground Segment and Instrument Operations Science Data Centre; doi: 10.1007/s10686-020-09691-8

Seli, B. et al. Stellar flares with Ariel;

Szabó, G. et al. High-precision photometry with Ariel; doi: 10.1007/s10686-021-09777-x

Turrini, D. et al. Exploring the link between star and planetary formation with Ariel; in press, arXiv:2108.11869

Peer reviewed publications about Ariel

Turrini D. et al. Tracing the formation history of giant planets in protoplanetary disks with Carbon, Oxygen, Nitrogen and Sulphur , ApJ, 909, 40, 2021.

Cracchiolo G., Micela, G.; Morello, G.; Peres, G.; Correcting the effect of stellar spots on ARIEL transmission spectra II. The limb darkening effect; MNRAS, 2021; doi:10.1093/mnras/stab2509

Cracchiolo, G.; Micela, G.; Peres, G.; Correcting the effect of stellar spots on ARIEL transmission spectra; MNRAS, 2021; dot:10.1093/mnras/staa3621

Mugnai, L. V.; Pascale, E.; Edwards, B.; Papageorgiou, A.; Sarkar, S.; ArielRad: the Ariel radiometric model; Experimental Astronomy, 50, 303, 2020.

Sarkar S., E. Pascale, A. Papageorgiou, L. Johnson, I. Waldmann, ExoSim: the Exoplanet Observation Simulator, Experimental Astronomy, 2020, arXiv:2002.03739, DOI:10.1007/s10686-020-09690-9.

Nikolaou N. et al. Lessons Learned from the 1st ARIEL Machine Learning Challenge: Correcting Transiting Exoplanet Light Curves for Stellar Spots , AJ, 2021. 

Yip, Hou K. et al., Peeking inside the Black Box: Interpreting Deep Learning Models for Exoplanet Atmospheric Retrievals; ApJ, 2021.

Edwards B. N. et al, Original Research By Young Twinkle Students (ORBYTS): Ephemeris Refinement of Transiting Exoplanets , MNRAS, 2020, https://doi.org/10.1093/mnras/staa1245.

Edwards B. N. et al., Original Research by Young Twinkle Students (Orbyts): Ephemeris Refinement of Transiting Exoplanets II , Research Notes of the AAS, 4, 7, 109, 2020.

Puig. L. et al.; The ESA Ariel mission is ready for implementation, SPIE, 11443, 1144310, https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2561273

Mösenlechner, G. et al.; Architectural design of the ARIEL FGS software, SPIE, 11452, 114521F, 2021; https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2562201.

Crouzet P. E. et al., Impact of proton radiation on the Ariel AIRS CH1 HAWAII-1RG MWIR detector, SPIE, 11454, 114540A, 2020, https://doi.org/10.1117/12.2561267.

Chioetto P. et al., The primary mirror of the Ariel mission: cryotesting of aluminum mirror samples with protected silver coating, SPIE, 11451, 114511A, 2020.

Naponiello L. et al., The role of the instrument control unit within the ARIEL Payload and its current design, SPIE, 11443, 114434P, 2020.

Anisman, L. O. et al. WASP-117 b: An Eccentric Hot Saturn as a Future Complex Chemistry Laboratory, AJ, 160, 233, 2020.

Bourgalais, J., Carrasco, N., et al. Ions in the Thermosphere of Exoplanets: Observable Constraints Revealed by Innovative Laboratory Experiments. AJ, 895, 77, 2020.

Guilluy, G. et al., ARES IV: Probing the Atmospheres of the Two Warm Small Planets HD 106315c and HD 3167c with the HST/WFC3 Camera; AJ, 161, 19, 2021.

Pluriel, W.; et al., ARES. III. Unveiling the Two Faces of KELT-7 b with HST WFC3 ,  AJ, 160, 112, 2020.

Skaf N. et al., ARES II: Characterising the Hot Jupiters WASP-127 b, WASP-79 b and WASP-62 b with HST, AJ, 160, 109, 2020.

Edwards B. N. et al., ARES I: WASP-76 b, A Tale of Two HST Spectra, AJ, 160, 8; 2020.

Changeat Q., Al-Refaie A., Mugnai L.V., Edwards B., Waldmann I. P., Pascale E., Tinetti G. (2020), Alfnoor: A Retrieval Simulation of the Ariel Target List, The Astronomical Journal, 160, 80, 2020.

Changeat Q., Keyte L., Waldmann I. P., Tinetti G. (2020), Impact of planetary mass uncertainties on exoplanet atmospheric retrievals, The Astrophysical Journal, 896, 107, 2020.

Changeat Q., B. Edwards, I. P. Waldmann, and G. Tinetti, Toward a More Complex Description of Chemical Profiles in Exoplanet Retrievals: A Two-layer Parameterization, The Astrophysical Journal, 886 39, 2019.

Edwards, B. N.; L. Mugnai, G. Tinetti, E. Pascale, and S. Sarkar (2019) An Updated Study of Potential Targets for Ariel, AJ, 157 242.

Dransfield, G.; Triaud, A. H. M. J., Colour-magnitude diagrams of transiting exoplanets – III. A public code, nine strange planets, and the role of phosphine, MNRAS, 499, 505, 2020.

Zellem R. et al., Constraining Exoplanet Metallicities and Aerosols with the Contribution to ARIEL Spectroscopy of Exoplanets (CASE), PASP, 131, 094401, 2019.

Middleton K. F. et al., An integrated payload design for the atmospheric remote-sensing infrared exoplanet large-survey (ARIEL): results from phase A and forward look to phase B1, SPIE, 11180, 1118036, 2019.

Tinetti, G., Drossart, P., Eccleston, P. et al., A chemical survey of exoplanets with ARIEL, Exp Astron (2018) 46: 135. https://doi.org/10.1007/s10686-018-9598-x

more publications

Press Releases

Ariel Press Release (06/11)Calling AI experts! Join the hunt for exoplanets

Artificial Intelligence (AI) experts have been challenged to help a new space mission to investigate Earth’s place in the universe.

The Ariel Data Challenge 2022, which launches on 30th June, is inviting AI and machine learning experts from industry and academia to help astronomers understand planets outside our solar system, known as exoplanets.

Dr Ingo Waldmann, Associate Professor in Astrophysics, UCL (University College London) and Ariel Data Challenge lead said:

“AI has revolutionised many fields of science and industry in the past years. The field of exoplanets has fully arrived in the era of big-data and cutting edge AI is needed to break some of our biggest bottlenecks holding us back.” 

Understanding our place in the universe

For centuries, astronomers could only glimpse the planets in our solar system but in recent years, thanks to telescopes in space, they have discovered more than 5000 planets orbiting other stars in our galaxy.

The European Space Agency’s Ariel telescope will complete one of the largest ever surveys of these planets by observing the atmospheres of around one fifth of the known exoplanets.  

Due to the large number of planets in this survey, and the expected complexity the captured observations, Ariel mission scientists are calling for the help of the AI and machine learning community to help interpret the data.

Ariel Data Challenge

Ariel will study the light from each exoplanet’s host star after it has travelled through the planet’s atmosphere in what is known as a spectrum. The information from these spectra can help scientists investigate the chemical make-up of the planet’s atmosphere and discover more about these planets and how they formed.

Scientists involved in the Ariel mission need a new method to interpret these data. Advanced machine learning techniques could help them to understand the impact of different atmospheric phenomena on the observed spectrum.

The Ariel Data Challenge calls on the AI community to investigate solutions. The competition is open from 30th June to early October.

Participants are free to use any model, algorithm, data pre-processing technique or other tools to provide a solution. They may submit as many solutions as they like and collaborations between teams are welcomed.

For the first time, this year the competition is also offering 20 participants access to High Powered Computing resource through DiRAC, part of the UK’s Science and Technology Facilities Council’s computing facilities.

Kai Hou (Gordon) Yip, Postdoctoral Research Fellow at UCL and Ariel Data Challenge Lead said:

“With the arrival of next-generation instrumentation, astronomers are struggling to keep up with the complexity and volume of incoming exo-planetary data. The NeurIPS data challenge 2022 provides an excellent platform to facilitate cross-disciplinary solutions with AI experts.”

The competition

Winners will be invited to present their solution at the prestigious NeurIPS conference. First prize winning teams will be awarded $2,000 and second prize winners will receive $500.

Winners will also be invited to present their solution to the Ariel consortium.

The competition is supported by the UK Space Agency, European Research Council, European Space Agency and Europlanet Society.

Previous competition

This is the third Ariel Machine Learning Data challenge following successful competitions in 2019 and 2021. The 2021 challenge welcomed 130 participants from across Europe, including entrants from leading academic institutes and AI companies.

This challenge, and its predecessor have taken a bite-sized aspect of a larger problem to help make exoplanet research more accessible to the machine learning community. The challenge is not designed to solve the data analysis issues faced by the mission outright but provides a forum for discussion and to encourage future collaborations.

More details about the competition and how to take part can be found on the Ariel Data Challenge website. Follow @ArielTelescope for more updates.

To continue reading the full Ariel press release, click HERE

Ariel Data Challenge Logo

Ariel Press Release (06/22) – ESA member states sign new Ariel collaboration agreement

European Space Agency (ESA) member states have signed a new agreement on 8 June to confirm roles for the Ariel mission.   

During its four year mission, Ariel will improve our understanding of what exoplanets are made of, how they were formed and how they evolve. Scientific data will be released to the scientific community and general public at regular intervals throughout its planned four-year operational phase.

Ariel, which was proposed by an international consortium led by UCL (University College London), was selected by ESA from 26 proposals put forward to be the next medium class mission in its science programme. A consortium of more than 50 institutes from 17 countries will work together to build the mission’s payload module.

The agreement between ESA member states ensures that the work taking place across the consortium continues to be supported by their national agencies.

Professor Giovanna Tinetti, Principal Investigator and science development lead for Ariel at UCL, said:

“Ariel will be transformational in helping us understand the planets in our galaxy. By studying hundreds of diverse worlds in different environments, we will see our own planet in context, giving us a better sense of why Earth formed as it did.”

Paul Eccleston, Ariel Consortium Programme Manager and Chief Engineer at the Science and Technology Facilities Council’s RAL Space said:

“Ariel is bringing together scientists, engineers and technicians from across Europe to deliver this fantastic mission which will allow us to study planets outside our solar system and understand our place in the universe. I’m proud of the progress the consortium has already made to design the payload. These ties are only set to strengthen as we progress towards launch.”

A payload design review will be completed later this year, with the design expected to be finalised by 2025. A flight acceptance review will be completed in early 2029 ahead of launch later that year.

Find out more from: UK Space Agency
To read the Ariel press release in PDF, click HERE

Artist impression of ESA’s Ariel exoplanet satellite.
Artist impression of ESA’s Ariel exoplanet satellite. Credit: Airbus.

Ariel Press Release (12/2021) – Airbus will build ESA’s Ariel exoplanet satellite

The European Space Agency (ESA) and Airbus have signed a contract to move forward with the design and construction of the Atmospheric Remote-sensing Infrared Exoplanet Large-survey (Ariel). Work on the Ariel payload module by the Ariel Mission Consortium is already well underway and the two teams will be working closely together to deliver the mission for launch in 2029.

 “With this milestone for the Ariel mission we celebrate the continuation of the outstanding relationship with our industry partners to keep Europe at the forefront of excellence in the field of exoplanet research well into the next decade and beyond,” says Günther Hasinger, ESA’s Director of Science.

The contract was celebrated between the two parties with a small ceremony at ESA headquarters in Paris on 6 December.

Airbus will lead the European industrial consortium building the satellite bus. The Toulouse facility in France will be the main site for designing, manufacturing and integrating the spacecraft elements, while Airbus Stevenage in the UK will lead the engineering of the avionics, radio frequency communication and electrical design of the platform.

“Airbus has extensive experience of leading ground-breaking science missions, including Juice, Gaia, Solar Orbiter, Lisa Pathfinder and Cheops, on which we are building for ESA’s latest science mission, Ariel,” said Jean-Marc Nasr, head of Space Systems at Airbus.

The mission’s payload module, which includes a one metre-class cryogenic telescope and associated science instruments, is provided by the Ariel Mission Consortium. The consortium comprises more than 50 institutes from 17 European countries. NASA also contributes to the payload. In 2021 the Consortium completed ten reviews covering each of the payload subsystems to ensure that the teams understand what needs to be built and that the preliminary designs for each part are feasible and, crucially, will work together correctly.

“The international Ariel Mission Consortium been making fantastic progress with the payload. We are looking forward to working closely with Airbus to ensure the payload works perfectly on board the spacecraft. Together we will be enabling amazing new discoveries about planets beyond our Solar System” said Paul Eccleston, Ariel Mission Consortium Project Manager and RAL Space Chief Engineer.

To continue reading the full Ariel press release, click HERE
To read the ESA press release, click HERE

ariel_space_high_res
Artist’s impression of Ariel on its way to Lagrange Point 2 (L2). Here, the spacecraft is shielded from the Sun and has a clear view of the whole sky. Image Credit: ESA/STFC RAL Space/UCL/Europlanet-Science Office

Ariel Press Release (09/2021) – Winners announced for the Ariel Data Challenge!

Artificial intelligence (AI) experts from around the world have been competing for the opportunity to help astronomers to explore planets in our local galactic neighbourhood.

The European Space Agency’s Ariel telescope, which launches in 2029, will study the atmospheres of around 1000 planets outside our solar system, known as exoplanets.

Observing faint signals to measure the make-up of exoplanet atmospheres is incredibly challenging and is made even more so by other signals the instrument may pick up. The effect of star activity, like sun spots, and even the noise of the spacecraft itself can obscure the information scientists receive from Ariel.

The Ariel Machine Learning Data Challenge, sponsored by Spaceflux Ltd, was set to harness the expertise of the artificial intelligence community to help disentangle this unwanted noise from the light filtering through exoplanet atmospheres. Over 110 teams from around the world participated with 35 teams submitting viable solutions. The teams represented a mix of academia and AI companies.

The competition winners, ML Analytics, an artificial intelligence company in Portugal, and a team from TU Dortmund University in Germany were able to achieve highly accurate solutions for even the most difficult to observe planets.

To continue reading the full press release, follow this link:
Winners announced for the machine vs stellar and instrument noise data challenge

Credit: ESA/STFC RAL Space/UCL/UK Space Agency/ ATG Medialab

Ariel Press Release (11/2020) – The European Space Agency formally adopts Ariel, the exoplanet explorer

The European Space Agency (ESA) have formally adopted Ariel, the first mission dedicated to study the nature, formation and evolution of exoplanets.

– Ariel has passed major feasibility reviews and has been formally adopted into the program of future missions for implementation.
– It will survey about 1000 planets outside our solar system during its lifetime.
– Ariel will unveil the nature, formation and evolution of a large and assorted sample of planets around different types of stars in our galaxy.

To continue reading the full press release, follow this link:
The European Space Agency formally adopts Ariel, the exoplanet explorer

Artist’s rendering of the Ariel Spacecraft. Credit: Ariel/Science Office

 Ariel Press Release (04/2019) – Ariel Data Challenge Series launched to build global community for exoplanet data solutions

Ariel, a mission to make the first large-scale survey of exoplanet atmospheres, has launched a global competition series to find innovative solutions for the interpretation and analysis of exoplanet data. The first Ariel Data Challenge invites professional and amateur data scientists around the world to use Machine Learning (ML) to remove noise from exoplanet observations caused by starspots and by instrumentation.

To continue reading the full press release, follow this link:
Ariel Data Challenge Launch 2019

The Ariel Data Challenge Series 2019. Credit: ARIEL Consortium

Ariel Press Release (03/2018) –
Ariel selected as ESA’s next medium-class science mission

Ariel, a mission to answer fundamental questions about how planetary systems form and evolve, has been selected by the European Space Agency (ESA) as its next medium-class science mission, due for launch in 2028. During a 4-year mission, Ariel will observe 1000 planets orbiting distant stars and make the first large-scale survey of the chemistry of exoplanet atmospheres. ESA’s Science Programme Committee announced the selection of Ariel from three candidate missions on 21st March 2018.

To continue reading the full press release, follow this link:
Ariel Selection Press Release UK 2018

 

Image:
Ariel will be placed in orbit around the Lagrange Point 2 (L2), a gravitational balance point 1.5 million kilometres beyond the Earth’s orbit around the Sun. Image Credit: ESA/STFC RAL Space/UCL/Europlanet-Science Office

ariel_lagrange_points_high_res


Ariel Press Release (01/2015) –
Mission Announcement

An ambitious European mission is being planned to answer fundamental questions about how planetary systems form and evolve. Ariel will investigate the atmospheres of several hundreds planets orbiting distant stars. It is one of three candidate missions selected last month by the European Space Agency (ESA) for its next medium class science mission, due for launch in 2026. The Ariel mission concept has been developed by a consortium of more than 50 institutes from 12 countries, including UK, France, Italy, Germany, the Netherlands, Poland, Spain, Belgium, Austria, Denmark, Ireland, Portugal. The mission will be presented today at the Pathways 2015 conference in Bern, Switzerland, by Ariel’s Principal Investigator, Prof Giovanna Tinetti of UCL.

“The essential nature of exoplanets is still something of a mystery to us: despite finding nearly 2000 exoplanets we haven’t yet found any discernible pattern linking the presence, size or orbital parameters of a planet to what its parent star is like,” said Tinetti. “If we are going to answer questions, such as how is the chemistry of a planet linked to the environment in which it forms, or is its birth and evolution driven by its host star, we need to study a statistically large sample of exoplanets. This is what Ariel is designed to do.” Continue reading “Press Releases”

Facts & Figures

Elliptical primary mirror: 1.1 x 0.7 metres
Mission lifetime: at least 4 years in orbit 
Payload mass / launch mass: ~500 kg / ~ 1500kg
Instrumentation: 3 photometric channels and 3 spectrometers covering continuously from 0.5 to 7.8 microns in wavelength
Launch date: 2029
Destination: Sun – Earth Lagrange Point 2 (L2)
Launch vehicle: Ariane 6-2. Launch shared with Comet Interceptor.

The Ariel mission payload is developed by a consortium of more than 50 institutes from 16 ESA countries – which include the UK, France, Italy, Poland, Belgium, Spain, the Netherlands, Austria, Denmark, Ireland, Norway, Sweden, Czech Republic, Hungary, Portugal, Estonia – plus a NASA contribution. A NASA and JAXA contributions have been confirmed.

Contact

SCIENCE CONTACT

Prof. Giovanna Tinetti
Ariel Principal Investigator
UCL Centre for Space Exochemistry Data – Director
+44 (0)7912509617 l +44 (0)1235 567353
g.tinetti@ucl.ac.uk

PAYLOAD CONSORTIUM CONTACT

Paul Eccleston
Ariel Project Manager – Chief Engineer
RAL Space, Science and Technology Facilities Council (STFC)
+44 (0)1235 446366
paul.eccleston@stfc.ac.uk

ADMINISTRATOR CONTACT

Emma Dunford
Ariel Administrator
UCL Centre for Space Exochemistry Data – Operations Administrator
e.dunford@ucl.ac.uk

COMMS & MEDIA CONTACT

Madeleine Russell
Ariel Consortium Communications Lead and RAL Space Communications Manager
madeleine.russell@stfc.ac.uk

Bex Coates
Ariel Communications & Media
UCL Centre for Space Exochemistry Data
r.l.coates@ucl.ac.uk
 
 

For general enquiries, please use the contact form below: