The European Space Agency’s (ESA) Euclid space telescope launches on a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket from Kennedy Space Center in Cape Canaveral, Florida on July 1, 2023. | Photo by GREGG NEWTON/AFP via Getty Images
This weekend saw the launch of the European Space Agency (ESA)’s Euclid mission: a space telescope which aims to uncover the mysteries of dark matter and dark energy. The 2.2 ton spacecraft with its 1.2 meter telescope was carried into space by a SpaceX Falcon 9 rocket and is now on its way to its orbit around the sun.
The mission had originally been slated to launch using a Russian Soyuz rocket from Europe’s spaceport in French Guiana, but following Russia’s invasion of Ukraine cooperation between ESA and Russia was halted. So instead, the telescope launched from Cape Canaveral Space Force Station in Florida, lifting off at 12:11AM ET on Saturday July 1st.
The telescope is headed for an orbit called L2, the second Lagrange point, which…