European Space Agency Flickr Update

Standard

Proba-V images Prague
12-05-2016 01:09 PM CEST

europeanspaceagency posted a photo:

Proba-V images Prague

Proba-V, among ESA’s smallest Earth-observing satellites, views Prague in the Czech Republic. From 9 May to 13 May ESA and its partners are hosting the flagship Living Planet Symposium 2016, gathering Earth observation scientists and users to discuss current and future ESA and related European missions.

As an ESA Earth Watch mission, Proba-V is being discussed at several sessions and a model satellite is also being exhibited.

Prague, the largest city of the Czech Republic, is famous for its impressive historical architecture. The ‘Golden City’ lies just south of the confluence of the Vltava (Moldau) and Elbe rivers. This 100 m-resolution image was acquired by Proba-V on 4 July 2015.

Launched on 7 May 2013, Proba-V is a miniaturised ESA satellite – less than a cubic metre – tasked with a full-scale mission: to map land cover and vegetation growth across the entire planet every two days.

Its main camera’s continent-spanning 2250 km swath width collects light in the blue, red, near-infrared and mid-infrared wavebands at 300 m resolution and down to 100 m resolution in its central field of view.

VITO Remote Sensing in Belgium processes and then distributes Proba-V data to users worldwide. An online image gallery highlights some of the mission’s most striking images so far, including views of storms, fires and deforestation.

Credit: ESA/Belspo – produced by VITO

Lunar ice drill
12-05-2016 11:25 AM CEST

europeanspaceagency posted a photo:

Lunar ice drill

Technology Image of the Week

A drill designed to penetrate 1–2 m into the lunar surface is envisaged by ESA to fly to the Moon’s south pole on Russia’s Luna-27 lander in 2020.

“It is an essential part of a science and exploration package being developed to reach, extract and analyse samples from beneath the surface in the Moon’s south polar region,” explains lunar exploration systems engineer Richard Fisackerly.

“This region is of great interest to lunar researchers and explorers because the low angle of the Sun over the horizon leads to areas of partial or even complete shadow. These shadowed areas and permanently dark crater floors, where sunlight never reaches, are believed to hide water ice and other frozen volatiles.”

Developed by Finmeccanica in Nerviano, Italy, the drill would first penetrate into the frozen ‘regolith’ and then deliver the samples to a chemical laboratory, which is being developed by the UK’s Open University.

The development team

(typical of the expected landing site of Luna-27) but the permanently shadowed regions of the Moon are known to be even colder, at down to –240°C.

The drill system plus laboratory are collectively known as Prospect: Platform for Resource Observation and in-Situ Prospecting in support of Exploration, Commercial exploitation & Transportation.

Prospect is one of the packages being developed by ESA for flight to the Moon as part of cooperation on Russia’s lunar programme. Pilot – Precise Intelligent Landing using On-board Technology – is an autonomous precision landing system incorporating ‘laser radar’ lidar for hazard detection and avoidance.

These packages are being developed by ESA’s Directorate of Human and Robotic Exploration and will be proposed for approval to fly by ESA’s Council of European Ministers in December 2016.

Learn more about ESA and the Moon in this interactive web documentary.

Credit: ESA/Finmeccanica

Impact chip
12-05-2016 10:41 AM CEST

europeanspaceagency posted a photo:

Impact chip

Operations Image of the Week

The European-built Cupola was added to the International Space Station in 2010 and continues to provide the best room with a view anywhere.

In addition to serving as an observation and work area when the crew operates the Station’s robotic arms, it also provides excellent views of Earth, celestial objects and visiting vehicles.

Its fused-silica and borosilicate-glass windows, however, sometime suffer from impacts by tiny artificial objects: space debris.

ESA astronaut Tim Peake took this photo from inside Cupola last month, showing a 7 mm-diameter circular chip gouged out by the impact from a tiny piece of space debris, possibly a paint flake or small metal fragment no bigger than a few thousandths of a millimetre across. The background just shows the inky blackness of space.

“I am often asked if the International Space Station is hit by space debris. Yes – this is the chip in one of our Cupola windows, glad it is quadruple glazed!” says Tim.

To cater for such possibilities, the Station is provided with extensive shielding around all vital crew and technical areas, so that minor strikes, like this one, pose no threat.

While a chip like the one shown here may be minor, larger debris would pose a serious threat. An object up to 1 cm in size could disable an instrument or a critical flight system on a satellite. Anything above 1 cm could penetrate the shields of the Station’s crew modules, and anything larger than 10 cm could shatter a satellite or spacecraft into pieces.

“ESA is at the forefront of developing and implementing debris-mitigation guidelines, because the best way to avoid problems from orbital debris is not to cause them in the first place,” says Holger Krag, Head of ESA’s Space Debris Office.

“These guidelines are applied to all new missions flown by ESA, and include dumping fuel tanks and discharging batteries at the end of a mission, to avoid explosions, and ensuring that satellites reenter the atmosphere and safely burn up within 25 years of the end of their working lives.”

Credit: ESA/NASA

You are subscribed to Flickr for European Space Agency.

Having trouble viewing this email? View it as a Web page.

WHADDAYA THINK !!!

Trage deine Daten unten ein oder klicke ein Icon um dich einzuloggen:

WordPress.com-Logo

Du kommentierst mit Deinem WordPress.com-Konto. Abmelden / Ändern )

Twitter-Bild

Du kommentierst mit Deinem Twitter-Konto. Abmelden / Ändern )

Facebook-Foto

Du kommentierst mit Deinem Facebook-Konto. Abmelden / Ändern )

Google+ Foto

Du kommentierst mit Deinem Google+-Konto. Abmelden / Ändern )

Verbinde mit %s