Ruth McAvinia is a science communicator and former news reporter. She is a member of faculty at the International Space University and a former contractor for ESA and EUMETSAT. She is based in Dublin, Ireland and tweets as @ruthie147.
ESA has committed to continuing its ExoMars programme and participation with the International Space Station, but cut funding for its Asteroid Impact Mission.
The fate of the ExoMars lander, Schiaparelli, remains uncertain. European Space Agency mission controllers had been optimistic on Wednesday night that a definitive answer would be known by Thursday morning’s news briefing. However, although some more details have been made public about the lander’s descent, it is not yet clear whether it hit the martian surface at a speed it could not survive.
Trace Gas Orbit is successfully in orbit at Mars, but the fate of the Schiaparelli lander is uncertain.