Beagle 2 Silent After Landing | Aero-News Network
Aero-News Network
RSS icon RSS feed
podcast icon MP3 podcast
Subscribe Aero-News e-mail Newsletter Subscribe

Airborne Unlimited -- Recent Daily Episodes

Episode Date

Monday

Tuesday

Wednesday

Thursday

Friday

Airborne On ANN

Airborne 05.23.16

Airborne 05.24.16

Airborne 05.25.16

Airborne 05.26.16

Airborne 05.27.16

Airborne Hi-Def On YouTube

Airborne 05.23.16

Airborne 05.24.16

Airborne 05.25.16

Airborne 05.26.16

Airborne 05.27.16

AEA2016 LIVE Aero-TV: 04/27-0830ET, 04/28-1400ET, 04/29-1100ET

Sun 'n Fun 2016 Innovation Preview on Vimeo!

Sun 'n Fun 2016 Innovation Preview on YouTube!

Thu, Dec 25, 2003

Beagle 2 Silent After Landing

Speak, Boy, Speak!

After being instructed to land on the surface of Mars Christmas Day, the European Space Agency probe Beagle 2 has been ominously silent. Still, flight controllers say they're optimistic the lander is alive and well and will be able to start transmitting soon.

ESA officials had hoped Beagle 2 would send a signal to be picked up by NASA's Mars Odyssey satellite orbiting overhead. But NASA says it has received no signal from the European lander.

"This is not the end of the story – this was the first opportunity," the European Space Agency's director of science, David Southwood, said at mission control in Darmstadt, Germany. "Getting signals back from Mars is not a straightforward operation. We're sure Beagle is down on the surface, and we just need to hear from it." 

Controllers last heard from Beagle when it rounded the far side of Mars. The signal was received  by the lander's mothership, Mars Express. That was just after 11:00 pm EST Wednesday night.

"At least the initial checks show that the spacecraft is in very good condition," flight director Michael McKay said, to applause from controllers.

"It's a bit disappointing, but it's not the end of the world. Please don't go away from here believing we've lost the spacecraft," Colin Pillinger, lead scientist on the Beagle 2 project, said in London.

The 143-pound lander was to have parachuted through the thin Martian atmosphere. Before touchdown, it was to have deployed airbags that surrounded the vehicle. The airbags would deflate after cushioning Beagle 2's landing and the probe was to then send a few musical notes composed by the British band "Blur" to confirm it had made it to the surface safely.

Mars has proven especially inhospitable to human attempts at exploration. A disappointing majority of the landers sent to Mars have malfunctioned, crashed or been lost.

Closely behind the Mars Express mission are two NASA landers, Spirit and Opportunity. They're scheduled to land on opposite sides of the planet January 3rd and January 24th. In the meantime, NASA's Mars Odyssey will continue listening for signs of life from Beagle 2 as the Mars Express spacecraft descends from its high initial orbit to a point where it can also listen.

FMI: www.esa.int/export/SPECIALS/Mars–Express/index.html

Advertisement

More News

Toledo Police Helicopter May Be Grounded

Department Seeks Grants To Help Keep Aircraft Flying The police department in Toledo, OH may be forced to ground its helicopter unless it is able to identify a grant for the $300,0>[...]

Bill Gordon Lost In Hudson River P-47 Ditching

Despite What Appeared To Be A Decent Ditching Effort, An Outstanding Pilot Was Lost The airshow community has suffered its second tragedy in nearly as many weeks as long-time warbi>[...]

Aero-News: Quote Of The Day (05.29.16)

"Putting the world's largest satellite constellation into orbit is an enormous task and Arianespace is ideally suited to launch the initial constellation, allowing OneWeb to start >[...]

ANN FAQ: How To Get YOUR News Out On Aero-News

Good News, Bad News... It's ALL News As the preeminent online aviation news resource out there, the editorial staff at Aero-News sees a large number of news releases. We look at al>[...]

Dubai-Based Business Jet Operator Enhances In-Flight Wi-Fi Services

Empire Aviation Group Selects Honeywell Technologies For Its Entire Fleet Honeywell has signed an agreement with Empire Aviation Group to provide its full suite of GoDirect connect>[...]

blog comments powered by Disqus



Advertisement

Advertisement

Podcasts

Advertisement

© 2007 - 2016 Web Development & Design by Pauli Systems, LC