Author(s): toutatis

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Gaia is an ESA space observatory, launched in 2013 and expected to operate until c. 2022. The spacecraft is designed for astrometry: measuring the positions, distances and motions of stars with unprecedented precision. The mission aims to construct by far the largest and most precise 3D space catalog ever made, totaling approximately 1 billion astronomical objects, mainly stars, but also planets, comets, asteroids and quasars, among others

Gaia undergoing testing at Kourou before launch, October 2013

Launch on a Soyuz-2.1b/Fregat rocket, 2013-Dec-19

Map of the Milky Way released as part of Gaia EDR3, 2020-Dec-2

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