Ariel: A space telescope to study distant worlds

The Ariel space telescope, which will study the atmospheres of distant worlds, has the green light to proceed. This video illustrates what the observatory, to launch in 2029, will look like. It also shows how the mission will do its science.

Ariel plans to observe up to a 1,000 exopanets during its main mission phase, watching these worlds as they move in front and behind their host stars. Information about the chemistry of the planets' atmospheres will be imprinted in the starlight coming towards us, and Ariel will extract this detail using its spectroscopic technologies.

Read more: Europe moves ahead with Ariel exoplanet mission