Author Archives: Giulia

Visualisation of the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter aerobraking at Mars. With aerobraking, the spacecraft's solar array experiences tiny amounts of drag owing to the wisps of martian atmosphere at very high altitudes, which slows the craft and lowers its orbit. Credit: ESA/ATG medialab

Keeping up with TGO

On 17 November, the flight controllers at ESOC began operations to bring the spacecraft into a new phase of the on-going aerobraking campaign, marking the start of ‘shorter’ orbits.

This image was taken by Byron Bay-based astrophotographer Dylan O'Donnell in October during a photo shoot at the New Norcia station, some 120 km north of Perth, Western Australia.

Busting ghosts

Just in time for the spooky season, we are pleased to share this post reporting on some alarming and apparently paranormal activity.

Trace Gas Orbiter entering orbit around Mars on 19 October 2016 Credit: ESA/ATG medialab

ExoMars successful flux reduction manoeuvre

ExoMars has successfully performed a Flux Reduction Manoeuvre (FRM) for the first time. The manoeuvre was triggered by the excessive density of Mars’ atmosphere, which had slowed the spacecraft above the limit the operations team normally allows....

One of the first star tracker images acquired as part of an experimental campaign to determine if the star trackers can spot asteroids. Credit: ESA CC BY-SA IGO 3.0

LISA Pathfinder hunts asteroids

This tiny, perfect mission has not only proven the technology needed to detect gravity waves in the future full LISA mission, it has also gone looking for asteroids!

TGO short summer break

On 25 June, TGO will suspend its aerobraking campaign until the end of August due to Mars' conjunction with the Sun.