Tag Archives: ESA

HRSC: Frost build-up near Mars north pole

This animated gif shows the build up of frosts in a 73 x 41 km section of the north polar ice cap of Mars between November and December 2004. The images were taken by the High Resolution Stereo Camera on … Continue reading

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ExoMars 2016: Skimming an alien atmosphere

After the smooth arrival of ESA’s latest Mars orbiter, mission controllers are now preparing it for the ultimate challenge: dipping into the Red Planet’s atmosphere to reach its final orbit. The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter is on a multiyear mission … Continue reading

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Full go-ahead for building ExoMars 2020

The first ExoMars mission arrived at the Red Planet in October and now the second mission has been confirmed to complete its construction for a 2020 launch. ESA and Thales Alenia Space signed a contract today [Dec 16, 2016] that … Continue reading

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ExoMars: Trace Gas Orbiter images Phobos

The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter has imaged the martian moon Phobos as part of a second set of test science measurements made since it arrived at the Red Planet on 19 October. The Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO), a joint endeavour … Continue reading

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How Europe plans to land on Mars in 2021

Europe has been trying to land on Mars since 2003, but none of the attempts have gone exactly according to plan. A couple of months ago, the ExoMars Schiaparelli landing demonstrator crashed onto the planet’s surface, losing contact with its … Continue reading

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HiRISE: Third image of Schiaparelli crash site

This is the third HiRISE image of the crash site of ESA’s Schiaparelli lander demonstration, and the second imaging capturing the lander site plus backshell and parachute in the central color stripe. [More at link]

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NASA radio on Trace Gas Orbiter aces relay test

Data from each of the two rovers active on Mars reached Earth last week in the successful first relay test of a NASA radio aboard Europe’s new Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO). The transmissions from NASA rovers Opportunity and Curiosity, received … Continue reading

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ExoMars: CaSSIS sends first images from orbit

The Mars Camera, CaSSIS, on the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter captured its first high resolution images of the Red Planet last week. The Bernese camera worked almost perfectly and has provided spectacular views of the surface. CaSSIS (Colour and Stereo … Continue reading

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HRSC: Adamas Labyrinthus

This labyrinth-like system of troughs and plateaus was imaged by ESA’s Mars Express on 21 June 2016. It shows part of a region known as Adamas Labyrinthus, which is found in Utopia Planitia in the northern lowlands of Mars. Here, … Continue reading

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ExoMars: Schiaparelli inquest makes progress

Good progress has been made in investigating the ExoMars Schiaparelli anomaly of 19 October. A large volume of data recovered from the Mars lander shows that the atmospheric entry and associated braking occurred exactly as expected. The parachute deployed normally … Continue reading

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ExoMars: Trace Gas Orbiter preps for first science observations

The ExoMars orbiter is preparing to make its first scientific observations at Mars during two orbits of the planet starting next week. The Trace Gas Orbiter, or TGO, a joint endeavour between ESA and Roscosmos, arrived at Mars on 19 … Continue reading

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Beagle 2 landed intact and deployed most or all of its solar panels, says new study

Scientists in Leicester [UK] have moved one step closer to understanding exactly what happened to the ill-fated Mars Lander Beagle 2, thanks to an innovative research technique. The probe was discovered on the Red Planet in November 2014 but uncertainty … Continue reading

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Opportunity report, Sol 4540, by A.J.S. Rayl, The Planetary Society

November 5, 2016: Opportunity Scales Spirit Mound, Takes Shot at Schiaparelli: Deep in the western rim of Endeavour Crater at Cape Tribulation, Opportunity spent the month of October on Spirit Mound studying the rich yet familiar geology at the first … Continue reading

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Mars ionosphere shaped by crustal magnetic fields

Scattered pockets of magnetism across the surface of Mars have a significant influence on the planet’s upper atmosphere, according to observations from ESA’s Mars Express. Understanding these effects may be crucial for ensuring safe radio communications between Mars and Earth … Continue reading

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HRSC: A record of ancient tectonic stress

Sets of ridges and troughs some 1000 km north of the giant Olympus Mons volcano contain a record of the intense tectonic stresses and strains experienced in the Acheron Fossae region on Mars 3.7–3.9 billion years ago. This scene, captured … Continue reading

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