Questions & Answers

What is the project designed to achieve?

The objective of ARCHES is to build scientifically-validated spectral distributions for the many stars, galaxies and clusters of galaxies detected by the ESA X-ray space observatory XMM-Newton. These multi-wavelength enhanced data sets will open new avenues of investigation and will be distributed to the international community through Virtual Observatory tools in order to ensure the largest audience.

Why is this project important for Europe and how does it benefit European citizens?

The XMM-Newton satellite is the most scientifically productive European X-ray observatory ever flown and is currently one of the flagships of the European Space Agency’s astronomical programme. By bringing together expertise from leading institutes in the field of multi-wavelength analysis, ARCHES will open to investigation new exciting domains of research and will very significantly increase the overall scientific return of this highly successful European space observatory at a modest cost.

How does the project exceed the current state of knowledge ?

Identifying the properties of a given star or galaxy in collections of astronomical catalogues with billions of entries and heterogeneous spatial resolutions is a complex process which requires the development of sophisticated software tools. Searching for new clusters of galaxies will also rely on novel tools that will associate potentially extended XMM-Newton objects to groups of faint optical galaxies.

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