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Netherlands Space Office

Science and Exploration

Man has always looked to the sky for answers to life’s big questions. As mankind’s technology advances so does our capability to potentially answer old questions like “How were we created?” and “How unique am I in the universe?”. 

What once inspired the fabled Chinese scientist Wan Hu to try and launch himself into space by tying 47 rockets to his chair around 1500 a.d. now inspires entire nations and international agencies to look to the outer rims of space with space telescopes and launch space ships towards other planets. In reward for such pioneering spirit, explorers have already received bountiful information. We now unravel the secrets of cosmic webs only seen in recent years, but seemingly felt long before Dutch scientist Hans Lippershey ever invented the telescope or Galileo ever put it to use. 

The Dutch traditions of pioneering and astronomy are the foundation for our current success in space research. Just as in the past, the Dutch create the instruments that scientists worldwide then use as the tools in discovery.

XMM Newton and an X-ray nova - artist impression - credit: ESA
XMM-Newton
Solving the cosmic mysteries of the violent Universe
Astro-H, SRON's first collaborative project with JAXA, in preparation for SPICA SAFARI - image: SRON
SPICA-SAFARI
Never-before-seen views of the universe
Herschel inspection in Kourou - credit: ESA
Herschel HIFI
Never-before-seen aspects of our Universe
JWST mirror - credit: NASA
James Webb Space Telescope
Hubble’s scion and our most far-seeing eye on the universe will have a Dutch heart.
Gaia satellite - artist impression - image: ESA
Gaia
Discovering the origin, structure and evolution of our Galaxy
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