Israel said Tuesday the US space agency NASA will launch its first space telescope mission by early 2026.
The Ultraviolet Transient Astronomy Satellite (ULTRASAT) is a premier project of Israel’s Space Agency and the Weizmann Institute of Science.
“We are proud to join this partnership, an international effort that will help us better understand the mysteries of the hot, transient universe,” said Mark Clampin, director of the Astrophysics Division at NASA Headquarters in Washington.
The Weizmann Institute of Science said the success of the mission will prove the “feasibility of making scientific breakthroughs using small and relatively affordable satellites [approximately $90 million, for the spacecraft and instrument] and will pave the way for Israel’s further space initiatives.”
It said the mission is expected to “transform scientists’ ability to detect and analyze transient events in the universe such as neutron star mergers and supernova explosions.”
Established in 1934, the Weizmann Institute of Science is Israel’s leading scientific research institute, which comprises dozens of experimental and theocratical research groups in the fields of biology, biochemistry, chemistry, mathematics, computer science, and physics.