THE EXOMARS PROGRAM 2016-2020
Objective: Establish if life ever existed on Mars
How: The ESA has established the ExoMars program to investigate the Martian environment
The ExoMars program demonstrated a number of essential flight and in-situ enabling technologies that were necessary for future exploration missions, such as an international Mars Sample Return mission. These included:
- Entry, descent and landing on the surface of Mars;
- Surface mobility
- Sample acquisition, preparation, distribution and analysis
At the same time a number of scientific investigations were carried out, for example:
- Searched for signs of past and present life on Mars;
- Investigated Martian atmospheric trace gases and their sources.
The 2016 mission was composed of the Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) and an Entry, descent and landing Demonstrator Module (EDM), known as Schiaparelli.
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