Help Shape the Future of Space Exploration

Join The Planetary Society Now  arrow.png

Join our eNewsletter for updates & action alerts

    Please leave this field empty
Blogs

Headshot of Emily Lakdawalla

ExoMars landing site downselections

Posted by Emily Lakdawalla

19-11-2007 17:00 CST

Topics: mission status, ExoMars rover, Mars

It hasn't been that long since the Mars Science Laboratory landing site downselection meeting; it was quickly followed by a meeting in Europe on ExoMars, which is currently planned for a 2011 launch. BBC News posted a story on the ExoMars meeting that included a list of ExoMars' short list of possible landing sites:

  • Mawrth Vallis - an ancient valley covered with light-coloured clay-rich minerals
  • Nili Fossae - large eroded surface fracture partially filled with clay-rich debris from a space impact
  • Meridiani Planum - ESA is looking at two different sites on this plain located two degrees south of the equator
  • Holden Crater - an ancient lakebed with layered sedimentary deposits
  • Gale Crater - an impact crater with exposed layered deposits

Sound familiar? I'll remind you of the short list of possible sites for MSL: Nili Fossae Trough; Mawrth Vallis; Southwest Meridiani; Jezero Crater; Holden Crater; and Terby Crater. MSL is designed to search for past habitable environments on Mars; ExoMars is designed to search for past life, so there's certainly overlap in their mission goals. Still, you'd expect the two missions to have somewhat different criteria for both the safety and science sides of landing site selection. I wonder how the final choice of MSL's landing site will affect the choice of ExoMars' landing site (if at all)?

ExoMars 2018 rover

ESA

ExoMars 2018 rover
 
See other posts from November 2007

 

Or read more blog entries about: mission status, ExoMars rover, Mars

Comments:

Leave a Comment:

You must be logged in to submit a comment. Log in now.
Facebook Twitter Email RSS AddThis

Blog Search

JOIN THE
PLANETARY SOCIETY

Beyond The Horizon, There's More To Explore!

Become a member of The Planetary Society and together we will create the future of space exploration.

Join Us

Featured Images

Exploration Mission 1 Orion flight spacecraft
Neptune from Voyager 2
Crescent Neptune and Triton
Neptune's Great Dark Spot
More Images

Featured Video

The Planetary Post - Star Trek 50th Anniversary

Watch Now

Space in Images

Pretty pictures and
awe-inspiring science.

See More

Join The Planetary Society

Let’s explore the cosmos together!

Become a Member

Connect With Us

Facebook, Twitter, YouTube and more…
Continue the conversation with our online community!