Author Topic: ESA-Roscosmos: ExoMars 2016 updates and discussion  (Read 297613 times)

Offline Star One

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ESA-Roscosmos: ExoMars 2016 updates and discussion
« Reply #1020 on: 02/21/2018 07:32 PM »
ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter completes aerobraking

« Last Edit: 02/21/2018 07:33 PM by Star One »

Offline Star One

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Re: ESA-Roscosmos: ExoMars 2016 updates and discussion
« Reply #1021 on: 03/08/2018 07:31 PM »
Europe’s ExoMars orbiter nears start of methane-sniffing science mission

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Nearly a year-and-a-half after arriving at the red planet, Europe’s ExoMars orbiter is finally approaching a planned perch around 250 miles over the rust-colored world after repeatedly dipping into the Martian atmosphere to lower its orbit.

The end of a year-long “aerobraking” campaign moves the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter closer to starting regular science observations, a transition expected in April, when the mission will begin measuring how much methane is in the Martian atmosphere, an indicator of potential ongoing biological or geological activity.

https://spaceflightnow.com/2018/03/07/europes-exomars-orbiter-nears-start-of-methane-sniffing-science-mission/

Offline FutureSpaceTourist

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Re: ESA-Roscosmos: ExoMars 2016 updates and discussion
« Reply #1022 on: 03/16/2018 04:38 PM »


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Published on 16 Mar 2018
Два года назад с космодрома Байконур ракетой «Протон» был запущен космический аппарат российско-европейской программы «ЭкзоМарс-2016». Сегодня марсианский аппарат TGO выходит на рабочую орбиту вокруг Красной планеты. Идёт проверка научной аппаратуры.

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Published on 16 Mar 2018
Two years ago, the spacecraft of the Russian-European program ExoMars-2016 was launched from the Baikonur Cosmodrome with the Proton rocket. Today, the Martian apparatus TGO enters the working orbit around the Red Planet. There is a check of scientific equipment.

Online Svetoslav

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Offline Star One

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Re: ESA-Roscosmos: ExoMars 2016 updates and discussion
« Reply #1024 on: 04/28/2018 02:06 PM »
Proof of life on Mars may be just months away as EU probe begins fly-bys

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“If we find traces of methane that are mixed with more complex organic molecules, it will be a strong sign that methane on Mars has a biological source and that it is being produced – or was once produced – by living organisms,” said Mark McCaughrean, senior adviser for science and exploration at the European Space Agency.

“However, if we find it is mixed with gases such as sulphur dioxide, that will suggest its source is geological, not biological. In addition, methane made biologically tends to contain lighter isotopes of the element carbon than methane that is made geologically.”

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“We will look at sunlight as it passes through the Martian atmosphere and study how it is absorbed by methane molecules there,” said Håkan Svedhem, the orbiter’s project scientist. “We should be able to detect the presence of the gas to an accuracy of one molecule in every 10 billion molecules.”

If the methane is found to be biological in origin, two scenarios will have to be considered: either long-extinct microbes, which disappeared millions of years ago, have left the methane to seep slowly to the surface – or some very resistant methane-producing organisms still survive underground. “Life could still be clinging on under the Martian surface,” said Svedhem.

However, if the gas is found to be geological in origin, the discovery could still have important implications. On Earth, methane is produced – geologically – by a process known as “serpentinisation” which occurs when olivine, a mineral present on Mars, reacts with water.

“If we do find that methane is produced by geochemical processes on Mars, that will at least indicate that there must be liquid water beneath the planet’s surface – and given that water is crucial to life as we know it, that would be good news for those of us hoping to find living organisms on Mars one day,” said McCaughrean.

https://www.theguardian.com/science/2018/apr/28/proof-life-mars-months-away-gas-orbiter


Offline bolun

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Re: ESA-Roscosmos: ExoMars 2016 updates and discussion
« Reply #1025 on: 09/17/2018 02:04 PM »
Frosty crater on Mars

This image shows the south-facing rim of a pit crater at 68°S in the Sisyphi Planum region of Mars. It is a colour composite made from images acquired on 2 September 2018 by the Colour and Stereo Surface Imaging System, CaSSIS, onboard the joint ESA-Roscosmos ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter, when the southern hemisphere of Mars was in late spring.

Most striking are the bright residual carbon dioxide ice deposits on south-facing slopes of the crater. In colder months carbon dioxide and some water vapour freezes on the surface. Then, as the Sun gets higher in the sky again, the ice sublimates away, revealing the underlying surface.

This particular crater is known to have active gullies – small, incised networks of narrow channels at the rim of the crater that are associated with debris flows. Ice-rich landslide-like flows of material down-slope can be seen in this image – perhaps related to the ‘defrosting’ of the ice as the seasons change.

Seasonal changes of ices and frost on Mars is one aspect of the ExoMars orbiter’s mission being discussed this week at the European Planetary Science Congress, a major European annual meeting on planetary science, this year hosted by the Technische Universität Berlin Germany.

The image measures 20 x 8 km and the resolution is 4.5 m/pixel. North is 45° on the upper left. The image was taken at 07:22 AM local solar time and assembled from the RED, PAN and BLU filters.

http://www.esa.int/spaceinimages/Images/2018/09/Frosty_crater_on_Mars

Image credit: ESA/Roscosmos/CaSSIS, CC BY-SA 3.0 IGO

Tags: Mars Exomars