The Gaia mission
Gaia is a very ambitious mission of the European Space Agency. At the heart of Gaia lie the measurements of the positions, distances, space motions, brightnesses and astrophysical parameters of stars, which represent fundamental pillars of modern astronomical knowledge. We provide a brief description of the Gaia mission with an emphasis on binary stars. In particular, we summarize results of simulations, which estimate the number of binary stars to be processed to several tens of millions. We also report on the catalogue release scenarios. In the current proposal, the first results for binary stars will be available in 2017 (for a launch in 2013).