Tech content trusted by users in North America and around the world
7,299 Reviews & Articles | 53,280 News Posts

Mars' lander fate is unclear, but signs are not good

Paolo Ferri, ESA's head of operations said it is too soon to jump to conclusions but 'it's clear that these are not good signs'
By: Lana Jelic | Science, Space & Robotics News | Posted: Oct 19, 2016 10:24 pm

The Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) of ESA's ExoMars 2016 has successfully performed the long 139-minute burn required to be captured by Mars and entered an elliptical orbit around the Red Planet.

 

mars-lander-fate-unclear-signs-good_01

 

The TGO is now on its planned orbit around Mars, accompanied by the 13-year old Mars Express orbiter.

 

 

However, contact has not yet been confirmed with the mission's test lander from the surface. The Schiaparelli lander was programmed to autonomously perform an automated landing sequence, but the signal stopped shortly before landing.

 

mars-lander-fate-unclear-signs-good_02

 

Paolo Ferri, ESA's head of operations said it is too soon to jump to conclusions but "it's clear that these are not good signs."

 

ESA announced they will hold a media briefing tomorrow at 10:00 CEST (08:00 GMT) on the status of ExoMars. It is expected they will share more info on the Schiaparelli status.

 

Schiaparelli and the Trace Gas Orbiter left for Mars in March aboard a Russian rocket.

 

ExoMars (Exobiology on Mars) is a two-part multi-year Martian astrobiology life searching project and joint mission of the European Space Agency (ESA) and Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos). The next step is scheduled for 2020 when a surface rover will be placed on the surface of Mars.

NEWS SOURCES:Latimes.com

Related Tags

Got an opinion on this news? Post a comment below!
loading