The last leg of ESA’s Pangaea training course has kicked off in the alien-like landscapes of Lanzarote, Spain, to bring future space missions to reality.
The Pangaea campaign – named after the ancient supercontinent – provides astronauts and space engineers with introductory and practical knowledge to find interesting rock samples as well as to assess the most likely places to find traces of life on other planets. Leading European planetary geologists share their insights into the geology of the Solar System.
The theory part was followed by field trips to the Ries crater in Germany and the Italian Dolomites. The Pangaea crew has just arrived to Lanzarote, Spain.
Course participants include veteran ESA astronaut Thomas Reiter, Roscosmos cosmonaut Sergei Kud-Sverchkov and ‘Spaceship EAC’ lead Aidan Cowley.
Pangaea is the first step in preparing European astronauts to become planetary explorers on missions to other planets allowing them to communicate with science advisors on Earth effectively.
Through Pangaea, Europe is developing operational concepts for surface missions where astronauts and robots work together, among themselves and with scientists and engineers on Earth, using the best field geology and planetary observation techniques.