The mission

Cheops is ESA's CHaracterising ExOPlanet Satellite. It is the first mission dedicated to studying bright, nearby stars that are already known to host exoplanets, in order to make high-precision observations of the planet's size as it passes in front of its host star. It will focus on planets in the super-Earth to Neptune size range, with its data enabling the bulk density of the planets to be derived – a first-step characterisation towards understanding these alien worlds.

The launch

  • Launch date: 18 December 2019
  • Launch site: Kourou, French Guiana
  • Launcher: Soyuz-Fregat
  • Orbit: Sun-synchronous, dusk-dawn orbit at 700 km above Earth
Cheops
Cheops image of its first target star
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A perfect blur – First image by exoplanet watcher Cheops

07/02/2020 6881 views 26 likes
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Artist's impression of Cheops
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Cheops opens its eye to the sky

29/01/2020 4999 views 41 likes
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Liftoff for Cheops, ESA’s exoplanet mission

18/12/2019 5879 views 22 likes
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Cheops launch
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Watch Cheops launch live

17/12/2019 25254 views 117 likes
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Exoplanet imaginarium
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Exoplanet and cosmology discoveries awarded Nobel Prize in …

08/10/2019 5576 views 123 likes
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Artist's impression of Cheops
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Cheops passes final review before shipment to launch site

29/07/2019 4302 views 90 likes
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Exoplanet satellite ready

29/03/2019 5629 views 92 likes
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Cheops in the clean room
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Call for media: Cheops ready for launch in October

19/03/2019 1001 views 18 likes
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Exoplanet mission launch slot announced

23/11/2018 8470 views 78 likes
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Cheops plaques
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Artwork unveiled on exoplanet satellite

27/08/2018 7334 views 75 likes
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Winning design
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Winning exoplanet rocket sticker selected

29/03/2018 6199 views 54 likes
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Soyuz launch
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Launch your design with Cheops

02/11/2017 20141 views 95 likes
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Soyuz launch
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Exoplanet mission gets ticket to ride

06/04/2017 9986 views 99 likes
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Cheops competition drawings
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Three thousand drawings to fly into space on Cheops

31/03/2016 5927 views 43 likes
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Send your drawing into space with Cheops

06/05/2015 11353 views 40 likes
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Artist impression of Cheops
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ESA Science Programme’s new small satellite will study supe…

19/10/2012 13269 views 42 likes
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