Mars Express Mission

 
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Photo: ESA

Mars has always been a fascinating planet for mankind. In the past the major research has been done by the Americans or Russians. With the Mars Express Mission Europe makes a great contribution to the Mars science. The high resolution mapping of the Martian surface is one the main interests. Further projects contain the search for life and the gain of knowledge about Mars which can give hints about the evolutionary processes on Earth itself. Many of the tasks of the Mars '96 Mission like the high resolution mapping are neither done nor covered by near future NASA missions. Fortunately the destroyed instruments of the Mars '96 mission had space capable  replacement models, which can be used now for the Mars Express Mission. Though they have to be reduced in weight, as the scientific payload decreased to 176 kg (including fuel the probe has a mass of 1042 kg). The Mars '96 space craft had a mass of 6180 kg, respectively 812 kg of scientific payload. The following table shows the most important experiments. The german contributions are the High Resolution Stereo Colour Imager and the MaRS experiment. Except from the Italian MARSIS with an American participation, each of the instruments is based on the former Mars '96 mission.

Instruments of the Orbiter

Detailed descriptions on the Mars Express Homepage

Instrument

Name

Principal
Investigators

Institute

ASPERA

Energetic Neutral
Atoms Analyser

R. Lundin

Swedish Institute of
Space Physics,
Kiruna, Schweden

BEAGLE-2

Geochemical Lander

C. Pillinger

Open University, Milton Keynes, Großbritannien

HRSC

High/Super Resolution
Stereo Colour Imager

G. Neukum

Free University Berlin, Germany

MaRS

Radio Science Experiment

M. Pätzold

University of Cologne, Germany

MARSIS

Sub surface Sounding
Radar/Altimeter

G. Picardi

University of Rome, Italien

OMEGA

IR Mineralogical Mapping Spectrometer

J-P. Bibring

Institut d'Astrophysique
Spatiale, Orsay, Frankreich

PFS

Planetary Fourier
Spectrometer

V. Formisano

Istituto Fisica Spazio
Interplanetario, Rome, Italien

SPICAM

UV and IR Atmospheric
Spectrometer

J-L. Bertaux

Service d'Aéronomie, Verrières-le-Buisson, Frankreich

 

 

Instruments of the lander

The Homepage of the Lander

gas analysis package

environmental sensors

PAW (position adjustable workbench) consists of following instruments:

- stereo camera

- microscope

- Mössbauer spectrometer

- X-ray spectrometer

- mole

- corer / grinder


 
 
Author: Dennis Reiß WWW-Editor: Dennis Reiß 
Last Modified: Wednesday, 07-Jul-2004 15:20:36 CEST