HERD Proposal Passes Joint International Review


A joint review meeting on the High Energy cosmic Radiation Detection (HERD) proposal, organized by the Italian Space Agency (ASI) and the Technology and Engineering Center for Space Utilization (CSU) of the CAS, was held at ASI, Rome, on May 11th.

The review board was composed of eleven international experts nominated by CSU and ASI. Prof. ZHANG Shuang-Nan, Principal Investigator of the HERD project, and Prof. Giovanni Ambrosi, the HERD coordinator in Europe, gave presentations on the HERD proposal and proposed European contributions to HERD during the review meeting.

Questions and inquiries concerning HERD scientific objectives, technical approaches and international cooperation from the review board were all answered by the HERD Joint Working Team.

The review board found that the scientific objectives of HERD were unique and crucial for understanding some important problems in fundamental physics, astrophysics and cosmology.

The review board agreed that the baseline design of the HERD payload meets all the scientific requirements and that HERD is technically feasible for launch around 2025. The feasibility and reliability of the proposed international cooperation schemes were also recognized.

The review board suggested that the final mission adoption of HERD should be made by the space agencies of China and Italy as soon as possible, and that MoUs between China and other countries should also be signed soon.

The High Energy cosmic Radiation Detection (HERD) experiment proposed by IHEP is an astronomy and particle astrophysics experiment to be installed on China’s future Space Station.

The primary scientific objectives are: indirect dark matter searches of unprecedented sensitivity; direct and precise cosmic ray spectrum and composition measurements up to the “knee” energy; and wide field-of-view monitoring and survey of the high energy gamma-ray sky.

HERD, a China-led mission with a key European contribution led by Italy, will be a flagship scientific experiment on board the Chinese Space Station.


 Group photo of the HERD proposal joint review meeting (Image by IHEP)

Contact Information

Mr. Guo Lijun

International Office, IHEP

E-mail: ljguo@ihep.ac.cn