LISA Pathfinder switch off: Mission summary and beyond

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Following 16 months of scientific effort, LISA Pathfinder completed its main mission on 30 June 2017, having demonstrated the technology needed to operate ESA’s future LISA space observatory to study gravitational waves – ripples in spacetime predicted by Albert Einstein.

On 18 July, the spacecraft was shut down after being placed in a safe disposal orbit. The final command was sent from ESOC, ESA's European Space Operations Centre, at 19:57 CEST that evening. 

That day, scientists, mission controllers and the mission's management team gathered at ESOC, Darmstadt, Germany, for a presentation on the successes of the mission prior to the shut-down. This video was recorded between 16:00-18:00 CEST, and includes highlight presentations on the mission's achievements. 


  • Rolf Densing, ESA Director of Operations
  • Andreas Rudolph, ESA Head of Astronomy Missions Division
  • Ian Harrison, ESA Spacecraft Operations Manager
  • Paul McNamara, ESA LISA Pathfinder Project Scientist,
  • Prof. Stefano Vitale, Principle Investigator for the LISA Pathfinder Mission, University of Trento
  • Phil Barela, NASA/JPL project manager for LISA Pathfinder Disturbance Reduction System
  • Colleen Marrese-Reading, JPL/Caltech
  • Prof. Karsten Danzmann, Director at the Max-Planck Institute for Gravitational Physics, LISA Pathfinder Co-Principle Investigator

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