Wednesday, May 28, 2008

MARS probe Phoenix -- GERMAN voice?

Who was the GERMAN voice announcing the progress of the phoenix landing?
Did it come from Darmstadt?

Not much one can find on the web...

=========

26 May 2008

Today at 00:57 UTC (02:57 CEST), crucial data recorded by ESA's Mars
Express during Phoenix's descent to the Martian surface were successfully
received at the European Space Operations Centre.

The European Space Agency today completed a key step in the Agency's
ongoing support to NASA's Phoenix mission, when signals from Phoenix
recorded by Mars Express were successfully received at ESA's Space
Operations Centre (ESOC), Darmstadt, Germany.

The signals were monitored between 23:21 - 23:47 UTC (01:21 - 01:47 CEST
26 May) during the lander's critical entry, descent and landing (EDL)
phase, and were received by the European spacecraft via the Mars Express
Lander Communications (MELACOM) system.


New friend in the neighbourhood

"Congratulations to our NASA colleagues on a hugely successful landing.
The Mars Express team welcomes a new friend in the neighbourhood," said
Paolo Ferri, Head of the Solar and Planetary Missions Division at ESOC.

Confirmation of ESA's support to the landing came in the early morning of
26 May at 00:52 UTC (02:52 CEST), after a 17-minute download transmitted
from Mars Express via NASA's Deep Space Network; the data will be
downloaded twice again to ensure fidelity.

The data were immediately made available to NASA, and will assist
scientists to analyse Phoenix's entry, descent and landing (EDL)
performance, comparing the actual to the planned trajectory.


In the coming days, Mars Express will monitor Phoenix using MELACOM 15
more times; at least one of these will be used to demonstrate and confirm
that the ESA spacecraft can be used as a data relay station for NASA,
receiving data from the surface and transmitting test commands to the
lander.

www.esa.int/esaCP/SEMUVI1YUFF_index_2.html

=========
ESA completed a key step in its ongoing support to NASA's Phoenix mission,
when signals from the Phoenix Mars lander recorded by Mars Express were
successfully received at ESA's Space Operations Centre (ESOC), Darmstadt,
Germany. NASA has just made the first few images available.

The signals from Phoenix were monitored by Mars Express between 01:21 -
01:47 CEST on 26 May during the lander's critical entry, descent and
landing (EDL) phase. They were received by the European spacecraft via the
Mars Express Lander Communications (MELACOM) system.

Image 1. The Surface Stereo Imager Right on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander
acquired this image at 17:15:35 local solar time at the Phoenix site on
the mission's martian day, or Sol, 0

The Phoenix mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf
of NASA. The mission is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory,
California, USA. The spacecraft was developed by Lockheed Martin Space
Systems, Denver.

Beginning late on 25 May, Mars Express executed a series of pre-programmed
commands specially designed to support the Phoenix EDL.

Mars Express?s Lander Communications Antenna was pointed toward Phoenix's
planned entry trajectory to record the signals transmitted as it plunged
toward the surface.

During this time, two Mars Express instruments, the High Resolution Stereo
Camera (HRSC) and the Ultraviolet and Infrared Atmospheric Spectrometer
(SPICAM), were turned on for observations.

The aim was to visually capture the trail of the lander's trajectory to
the Martian surface, to study the characteristics of the atmosphere during
the lander's descent, and to monitor the lander's performance during EDL.

Additionally, the Planetary Fourier Spectrometer (PFS) on board Mars
Express has been collecting relevant data since 8 May this year. This
includes information on the physical conditions of the Martian atmosphere
(temperature, pressure and density) above the expected the landing site.
This data has been provided to NASA in support of their observations of
the physical conditions in the atmosphere prior to landing.

Image 2. The Surface Stereo Imager Right on NASA's Phoenix Mars Lander
acquired this image at 17:11:32 local solar time at the Phoenix site on
the mission's Martian day, or Sol, 0.

The Phoenix mission is led by the University of Arizona, Tucson, on behalf
of NASA. The mission is managed by NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory,
California, USA. The spacecraft was developed by Lockheed Martin Space
Systems, Denver.

Beginning late on 25 May, Mars Express executed a series of pre-programmed
commands specially designed to support the Phoenix EDL.

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