Science Data, Discoveries and People: Legacy of the Herschel Space Observatory
News Release • September 21, 2017
The Herschel mission, a trailblazing space observatory that provided a unique view of our cosmos during its almost four years of operations, leaves a legacy of treasured data, thousands of scientific papers, as well as a new generation of astronomers who cut their professional teeth on this remarkable endeavour.
Herschel's Chronicles of Galaxy Evolution
News Release • September 20, 2017
Delving deep into the history of our cosmos, the Herschel Space Observatory scrutinised hundreds of thousands of star-forming galaxies, peering back in time to when the Universe was less than one billion years old. These observations probed the peak epoch of stellar production, about ten billion years ago, when galaxies were forming stars roughl...
The Cosmic Water Trail Uncovered by Herschel
News Release • September 19, 2017
During almost four years of observing the cosmos, the Herschel Space Observatory traced out the presence of water. With its unprecedented sensitivity and spectral resolution at key wavelengths, Herschel revealed this crucial molecule in star-forming molecular clouds, detected it for the first time in the seeds of future stars and planets, and id...
How Herschel Unlocked the Secrets of Star Formation
News Release • September 18, 2017
Surveying the sky for almost four years to observe the glow of cold cosmic dust embedded in interstellar clouds of gas, the Herschel Space Observatory has provided astronomers with an unprecedented glimpse into the stellar cradles of our Galaxy. As a result, giant strides have been taken in our understanding of the physical processes that lead t...
New Catalogues for Herschel Legacy Archive
News Release • June 20, 2017
Two new catalogues, based on data from ESA's Herschel Space Observatory, have been released to the scientific community. The point source catalogues are examples of a new type of data product from two of Herschel’s instruments, SPIRE and PACS.
New Herschel Maps and Catalogues Reveal Stellar Nurseries Across the Galactic Plane
News Release • April 22, 2016
ESA's Herschel mission releases today a series of unprecedented maps of star-forming hubs in the plane of our Milky Way galaxy. This is accompanied by a set of catalogues listing hundreds of thousands of compact sources that span all phases leading to the birth of stars in our Galaxy.
Suzaku, Herschel Link a Black Hole 'Wind' to a Galactic Gush of Star-forming Gas
News Release • March 25, 2015
By combining observations from the Japan-led Suzaku X-ray satellite and the European Space Agency's infrared Herschel Space Observatory, scientists have connected a fierce "wind" produced near a galaxy's monster black hole to an outward torrent of cold gas a thousand light-years across.
Herschel’s view of the early Universe reveals galaxy cluster fireworks
News Release • December 18, 2014
Astronomers using ESA’s Herschel space observatory have found, for the first time, fireworks of star birth within galaxies at the dense core of a massive early Universe galaxy cluster. This frenzy of star formation reveals the young lives of now “red and dead” elliptical galaxies and gives new clues to the evolution of some of the largest struct...
NASA Telescopes Uncover Early Construction of Giant Galaxy
News Release • August 27, 2014
Astronomers have for the first time caught a glimpse of the earliest stages of massive galaxy construction. The building site, dubbed "Sparky," is a dense galactic core blazing with the light of millions of newborn stars that are forming at a ferocious rate.
Herschel Sees Budding Stars and a Giant, Strange Ring
News Release • June 12, 2014
The Herschel Space Observatory has uncovered a weird ring of dusty material while obtaining one of the sharpest scans to date of a huge cloud of gas and dust, called NGC 7538. The observations have revealed numerous clumps of material, a baker's dozen of which may evolve into the most powerful kinds of stars in the universe.
NASA and ESA Telescopes Help Solve Mystery of Ultra-Compact, Burned-Out Galaxies
News Release • January 22, 2014
Astronomers using NASA's Hubble and Spitzer Space Telescopes, Europe's Herschel Space Observatory, and many ground-based telescopes have pieced together the evolutionary sequence of compact elliptical galaxies that erupted and burned out early in the history of the universe.
Herschel Completes Its 'Cool' Journey In Space
News Release • April 29, 2013
Herschel has produced an intricate view of the remains of a star that died in a stellar explosion a millennium ago. It has provided further proof that the interstellar dust which lies throughout our Galaxy is created when massive stars reach the end of their lives.
Herschel to Complete Its Mission Soon
News Release • March 5, 2013
The Herschel space observatory is expected to exhaust its supply of liquid helium coolant in the coming weeks, after spending more than three years studying the cool universe and surpassing the expectations of the international team of scientists involved.
Black Holes and Star Formation: A Herschel Perspective
News Release • February 13, 2013
The possible effects of supermassive black holes on star formation in their host galaxies pose a tricky puzzle. Galaxy surveys from Herschel are being used to try to understand this complex interaction.
Herschel Finds Star Past its Prime Possibly Making Planets
News Release • January 30, 2013
A star thought to have passed the age at which it can form planets may, in fact, be creating new worlds. The disk of material surrounding the surprising star called TW Hydrae may be massive enough to make even more planets than we have in our own solar system.
NASA, ESA Telescopes Find Evidence For Asteroid Belt Around Vega
News Release • January 8, 2013
Astronomers have discovered what appears to be a large asteroid belt around the star Vega, the second brightest star in northern night skies. The scientists used data from NASA's Spitzer Space Telescope and the European Space Agency's Herschel Space Observatory, in which NASA plays an important role.
Herschel Sees Intergalactic Bridge Aglow with Stars
News Release • May 17, 2012
The Herschel Space Observatory has discovered a giant, galaxy-packed filament ablaze with billions of new stars. The filament connects two clusters of galaxies that, along with a third cluster, will smash together and give rise to one of the largest galaxy superclusters in the universe.
Overfed Black Holes Shut Down Galactic Star-Making
News Release • May 9, 2012
The Herschel Space Observatory has shown galaxies with the most powerful, active black holes at their cores produce fewer stars than galaxies with less active black holes. The results are the first to demonstrate black holes suppressed galactic star formation when the universe was less than half its current age.
Herschel and Spitzer See Nearby Galaxies' Stardust
News Release • January 10, 2012
The cold dust that builds blazing stars is revealed in new images that combine observations from the Herschel Space Observatory and Spitzer Space Telescope. The new images map the dust in the galaxies known as the Large and Small Magellanic Clouds, two of the closest neighbors to our own Milky Way galaxy.
Herschel Finds Oceans of Water in Disk of Nearby Star
News Release • October 20, 2011
Using data from the Herschel Space Observatory, astronomers have detected for the first time cold water vapor enveloping a dusty disk around a young star. The findings suggest that this disk, which is poised to develop into a solar system, contains great quantities of water, suggesting that water-covered planets like Earth may be common in the u...
Space Observatory Provides Clues to Creation of Earth's Oceans
News Release • October 5, 2011
Astronomers have found a new cosmic source for the same kind of water that appeared on Earth billions of years ago and created the oceans. The findings may help explain how Earth's surface ended up covered in water.
Herschel Telescope Detects Oxygen Molecules in Space
News Release • August 1, 2011
The Herschel Space Observatory's large telescope and state-of-the-art infrared detectors have provided the first confirmed finding of oxygen molecules in space. The molecules were discovered in the Orion star-forming complex.
Twisted Tale of our Galaxy's Ring
News Release • July 19, 2011
New observations from the Herschel Space Observatory show a bizarre, twisted ring of dense gas at the center of our Milky Way galaxy. Only a few portions of the ring, which stretches across more than 600 light-years, were known before.
Herschel Helps Solve Mystery Of Cosmic Dust Origins
News Release • July 7, 2011
New observations from the infrared Herschel Space Observatory reveal that an exploding star expelled the equivalent of between 160,000 and 230,000 Earth masses of fresh dust. This enormous quantity suggests that exploding stars, called supernovae, are the answer to the long-standing puzzle of what supplied our early universe with dust.
Herschel's Hidden Talent: Digging Up Magnified Galaxies
News Release • November 4, 2010
It turns out the Herschel Space Observatory has a trick up its sleeve. The telescope, a European Space Agency mission with important NASA contributions, has proven to be excellent at finding magnified, faraway galaxies.
Herschel Finds a Hole in Space
News Release • May 11, 2010
The Herschel Space Observatory has made an unexpected discovery: a gaping hole in the clouds surrounding a batch of young stars. The hole has provided astronomers with a surprising glimpse into the end of the star-forming process.
Herschel Reveals the Hidden Side of Star Birth
News Release • May 6, 2010
The first scientific results from ESA's Herschel infrared space observatory are revealing previously hidden details of star formation. New images show thousands of distant galaxies furiously building stars and beautiful star-forming clouds draped across the Milky Way.
Herschel and Planck Commissioning has Begun
News Release • May 20, 2009
After a perfect injection by the Ariane 5 launcher on 14 May, the critical Launch and Early Orbit Phase (LEOP) for Herschel and Planck has started to wind down, while commissioning of the scientific instruments and subsystems on both spacecraft has begun.
ESA: Herschel and Planck Get Green Light for Launch Campaign
News Release • February 9, 2009
ESA's Herschel and Planck missions have successfully completed their test campaigns in Europe and will be soon transported to Europe's spaceport at the Centre Spatial Guyanais in Kourou, French Guyana.