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A Time lapse movie of LISA Pathfinder's optical bench being packed for its journey to Astrium

LISA Pathfinder will be the quietest place in the Solar System

After intensive testing, LISA Pathfinders optical bench has proven it is ready to fly.

LISA Pathfinder's optical bench arrives at Astrium for integration into the spacecraft

LISA Pathfinder's optics are subjected to rigorous pre-flight tests

Behind the scenes: A short time lapse movie of setting up and filming in the optical laboratory

LISA Pathfinder - the quietest place in the solar system

About the clips

LISA is scheduled for launch into space in 2034 as a mission of the European Space Agency (ESA). NASA, along with a team of US scientists, are currently evaluating how US could participate in the mission. LISA will consist of three satellites spanning an equilateral triangle with each side approx. 2.5 million kilometers long. The satellites will measure their distances to picometer precision with lasers. Gravitational waves passing through the formation flight in space change these distances Gravitational waves passing through the constellation change these distances by tens of trillionths of a meter. LISA´s key technologies were successfully demonstrated with ESA´s LISA Pathfinder mission, which operated between 2015-2017.

LISA will be a large-scale space mission designed to detect one of the most elusive phenomena in astronomy - gravitational waves. With LISA we will be able to observe the entire universe directly with gravitational waves, learning about the formation of structure and galaxies, stellar evolution, the early universe, and the structure and nature of spacetime itself. The LISA proposal for the L3 mission slot was accepted by ESA in June 2017 and the mission is currently in the first planning stages. LISA will measure low-frequency gravitational waves. These are emitted by events such as supermassive black holes with millions or billions times the mass of our Sun merging at the centers of galaxies, millions of binary stars in our Galaxy, or exotic sources such as cosmic strings.