Puli Space Technologies

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„Landing Sites for Exploration Missions” workshop was held in Leiden, Netherlands

Csilla Orgel at ESTEC

Year 2011 started with an excellently organized planetology forum. Between January 17 and 21 European planetologists met in Leiden (NL) to discuss landing site directives for future ESA (European Space Agency) and NASA (US National Aeronautics and Space Agency) missions. At the end of the workshop it was also possible to suggest a specific landing site for the professionals gathered. Of course landing sites on another planet are not pinpointed in just a week, preliminary ideas were already collected before the meeting. The exact landing site is chosen half a year before before a space probe starts, no modifications are later possible. Various workgroups were formed at the meeting: Mars 2016 Demonstration Lander, Mars Sample Return (MSR), ExoMars, Phobos/asteroids, and GLXP-Moon. Hungary was represented by Ákos Kereszturi at ExoMars and Csilla Orgel (PuliSpace, left on the image) in MSR. By the middle of the week the ExoMars and MSR groups were joined, as the two landers will touch down together in 2018 on Mars. Choosing the sites proved rather difficult due to the various scientific goals pursued by these missions. Meetings took place twice a day and settled topics were presented at the end of the day to all participants of the workshop allowing scientists to get an idea of each other’s work. Talks were given between the meetings by professionals from the US and Europe, who presented experiences from past missions (Pathfinder, Mars Exploration Rovers, Beagle-2, Phoenix). The workshop ended with a conference at ESTEC (European Space Research and Technology Centre), Noordwijk. At the end of the event a tour of ESTEC was organized during which facilities for conducting full space missions were visited, and „clean rooms” used for testing space probes were also examined through the glass. All in all a large amount of experience was gathered during this professional brain storming.

Csilla Orgel

Last Updated (Friday, 18 March 2011 00:23)

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