Researcher in charge at IA
Margarida S. Cunha
GAIA is a cornerstone mission of the European Space Agency (ESA). It will conduct a census of one thousand million stars in our Galaxy in order to address many key problems in stellar astrophysics, on the formation, evolution and structure of the Milk Way and several other topics including the detection of dark matter, extra-solar planets and near-Earth objects. GAIA is scheduled to be launched in 2011 and will monitor each target about 100 times during 5 years. Processing and analyzing the enormous amount of data produced by the mission will be extremely challenging tasks. This is the role of the GAIA Data Processing & Analysis Consortium (DPAC) – a large international structure involving nearly 300 individuals.
In March 2006 a consortium was established aiming at the coordinated participation of Portuguese researchers and institutions in the science programme of the European Space Agency (ESA). The ‘Consórcio Português para a Astronomia da ESA’ (CPAE) is an informal structure including at the moment 7 research centers and 3 private companies. In these fee months, the activity of CPAE has already resulted in the involvement of the Portuguese community in GAIA. As a result of the contacts and agreements established between CPAE members and the DPAC managers, participation in several DPAC Work Packages (WPs) has already started. With this proposal, we apply for necessary national funding to support the participation of the Portuguese community in GAIA’s DPAC during the first 3 years.
1 September 2007
31 December 2011