A joint European-Japanese project is proposed to implement the SPace Infrared telescope for Cosmology and Astrophysics, SPICA, an infrared space observatory. With a 2.5-meter primary mirror cooled to below 8 K, and with a new generation of ultra-sensitive detector arrays, SPICA will offer the community a unique astronomical facility covering the rich 12 – 350 μm spectral range, capable of making deep and wide surveys to unprecedented depths in spectroscopy, photometry and polarimetry, with a gain in raw sensitivity of more than two orders of magnitude over both Spitzer and Herschel.
SPICA commands an enormous discovery space enabling scientists to react quickly to new discoveries with ALMA, JWST and ground based IR telescopes, by exploring this unique and complementary spectral range. The LAB is in charge of the hardware development of the warm electronics readout for the SAFARI instrument. Scientifically, we are strongly involved in the star formation and galaxy topics.
Scientific contact: Fabrice Herpin