ann1524 — Announcement
New European Hubble Archive eHST launched at ESAC
15 October 2015
Today, the European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC) has launched the new European Hubble Space Telescope archive — or eHST for short . This archive offers several new features, some of which are not yet available anywhere else. In addition, it offers a very user friendly interface.
Currently about 50% of the publications from Hubble are based on archive data, making the archive a goldmine for astronomers. The European archive has always been a dynamic complement to the primary archive based at the Space Telescope Science Institute (STScI) in Baltimore, USA, rather than just a copy, and the new eHST enhances its capabilities even further.
The eHST has been completely re-engineered and is now faster, more accurate and more robust than its progenitor. It is also easy to maintain and to extend, which will make it easy to integrate the Hubble Source Catalogue by the end of 2015.
For the user it offers an interface which fits the modern standards. Additionally the search mechanism is now more intuitive and user friendly than before. It is designed to show a simple set of constraints by default, which can be easily extended. A new preliminary results view shows, in real time, the amount of available Hubble data that a user would obtain with the desired search filters, before performing the search. The new archive also allows searches of proposals and publications connected with Hubble data, with links back to the original observations within those proposals and papers.
Furthermore, the search result now delivers enhanced metadata and new data visualisations including improved previews — also of the FITS header metadata — and interactive spectrum plotting. It also shows the area of the selected observation on the sky.
The capabilities of the eHST will make it easier for astronomers all over the world to find the data that they are searching for. Amateur astronomers and treasure hunters will undoubtedly also benefit, and will no doubt uncover many hidden, unpublished and beautiful images in the archive.
The idea of having a European version of the Hubble Space Telescope archive, now served from the European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC), began in the early 1980s. From 1984 until 2010, ESA and ESO cooperated to operate a Hubble information, utilities and data centre — the Space Telescope European Coordinating Facility (ST–ECF), based at the European Southern Observatory's Headquarters near Munich.
In 2012 the European Hubble archive moved to the European Space Astronomy Centre in Villanueva de la Cañada, Spain. Here the archives for the majority of ESA's astronomy and Solar System missions are kept so researchers have a single entry point for accessing the wealth of scientific data. Data from the Cluster, Hubble Space Telescope, EXOSAT, Herschel, ISO, Planck, SOHO, Ulysses and XMM-Newton missions and from the interplanetary spacecraft Mars Express, SMART-1, Rosetta, Huygens, Venus Express and Giotto are already available in ESAC’s archival system.
- The new European Hubble Archive eHST
- European Space Astronomy Centre (ESAC)
- European Southern Observatory (ESO)
- Hubble's Hidden Treasures
ESA/Hubble, Public Information Officer
Cell: +49 176 62397500
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