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When seen through the lens of technology, few resources are truly scarce; they’re mainly inaccessible. 

 

Peter Diamandis

Europe begins Mars site selection

RATE THIS! +24
Posted in Science on 30th Mar, 2014 01:40 AM by AlexMuller

The European Space Agency (Esa) has published the "longlist" of eight sites it is considering as a destination for the ExoMars rover. The 300kg vehicle will be put on the surface of the Red Planet in January 2019 to search for evidence of past or present life. It should operate for at least seven months and will carry a drill to probe up to 2m underground.

 
The sites are generally clustered in a relatively tight zone close to the equator. They are: Hypanis Vallis, Simud Vallis, Mawrth, Oxia Planum (x2), Coogoon Valles, Oxia Palus and Southern Isidis.
 
The ExoMars Landing Site Selection Working Group is meeting now in Madrid to begin the process of downselection. The teams that proposed these locations will make their case during the Spanish gathering (two, virtually identical proposals were received for Mawrth).
 
It is hoped to have a shortlist of no more than four locations in June or July. These will then be intensively studied, calling on new high-resolution pictures and mineralogical data acquired by satellites in orbit at Mars.

Tags: spaceMarsESAExoMars

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Comments

Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-30
+3
There is so much interest in Mars! ESA should be involved and complement the others, including private European companies such as Mars One
2 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-30
+2
This first task for ESA is the easy one and a final decision about the landing place is likely to be announced in 2017. Choosing the places you'd love to go is indeed the easy part; having the capability to reach them is another question. Reply
Reply
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-30
+3
This is long term project and may be quite a complex one due to multinational and political side. Nevertheless, the ExoMars project has had several ups and downs, but it is hopefully now moving positively in the right direction.
2 Replies
Author: Guest
Posted: 2014-03-30
+2
Yes, this venture is a joint undertaking with the Russians, who, as well as providing the launch rocket in May 2018, and some of the instrumentation, will also build the landing system. Reply
Reply


 

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