June 7, 2023

Euclid organization and consortium

Overall organization

ESA is responsible for the mission. The Euclid consortium is in charge of supplying ESA with the instruments and most of the Scientific Ground Segment (SGS). NASA is supplying the NISP instrument’s flight detectors and their read-out electronics.

More precisely, ESA is responsible for:

  • development of the satellite, with Thales Alenia Space Italy (TAS-I) in Turin as industrial prime contractor
  • development of the Payload Module (PLM), with Airbus Defence & Space (ADS) in Toulouse as prime contractor
  • supply of the VIS instrument’s CCD detectors (under contract with E2V)
  • development of the Operations Ground Segment (OGS), consisting of the Mission Operations Centre (MOC) and Science Operations Centre (SOC)
  • satellite launch and positioning, and subsequently satellite operations
  • archiving of science products and their distribution to the scientific community

The Euclid Science Team (EST) is overseeing development, operations and scientific performance, ensuring that science goals are met and maximizing science return. It is chaired by ESA’s Euclid Project Scientist, assisted by two scientific experts responsible for legacy science that could be conducted with Euclid data, and eight members of the Euclid Consortium in charge of monitoring scientific performance.

Euclid Consortium

The Euclid Consortium today comprises more than 2,200 people (425 in France) from 250 research laboratories (35 in France) in 16 countries (Austria, Belgium, Denmark, Finland, France, Germany, Italy, Netherlands, Norway, Portugal, Romania, Spain, Switzerland, United Kingdom, Canada and United States).

The Euclid Consortium is overseen by the Euclid Consortium Board (ECB), represented and chaired by the Euclid Consortium Lead (ECL), currently a scientist from the IAP astrophysics institute in Paris (CNRS).

The countries contributing to the Euclid Consortium and ESA are committed to their respective deliverables through a multilateral agreement (MLA). The national space agencies that signed the MLA are responsible for their country's contributions. A Steering Committee at agency level monitors the project’s progress and ensures implementation of the MLA.

The laboratories in the consortium get support from their national space agencies, which guarantee each country’s commitments, and from their national research structures (research agencies, observatories and universities). This support provides extra backing to funding from ESA and represents roughly 30% of the mission’s total cost.

Consortium organization and responsibilities

The Euclid Consortium is in charge of:

  • delivery to ESA of the VISible instrument (VIS) developed by Mullard Space Science Laboratory (MSSL, United Kingdom
  • delivery to ESA of the NISP instrument (Near Infrared Spectro Photometer) developed by the LAM astrophysics laboratory in Marseille (France)
  • development and operation of the Science Ground Segment (SGS), as well as delivery of science products to ESA; notably, under the responsibility of Italy’s INAF national astrophysics institute (Instituto Nazionale d'AstroFisica), it is developing the required processing functions (PFs) with support from Science Working Groups (SWG) and the corresponding software and computing infrastructures (Science Data Centres (SDCs)).
  • data analysis and their scientific interpretation

These responsibilities rely on multiple contributions from other member countries of the consortium, which is also assisted by an ECL Local Support Office, a Science Working Group (SWG) and a communication unit (COM), all coordinated by the Euclid Consortium Coordination Group (ECCG).


Euclid Consortium organization. Source: Euclid - Mapping the geometry of the dark Universe - ESA/SRE(2011)12, July 2011, Definition Study Report