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Schiaparelli landing site
21-10-2016 07:22 PM CEST

europeanspaceagency posted a photo:

Schiaparelli landing site

The landing site of the Schiaparelli module within the predicted landing ellipse in a mosaic of images from the Context Camera (CTX) on NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) on NASA’s 2001 Mars Odyssey orbiter.

Below the main image are a pair of before-and-after images, taken by the CTX camera on 29 May 2016 (left) and 20 October 2016 (right), respectively. The 20 October image shows two new features appearing following the arrival of the Schiaparelli test lander module on the martian surface on 19 October.

One of the features is bright and can be associated with the 12-m diameter parachute used in the second stage of Schiaparelli’s descent, after the initial heat shield entry. The parachute and the associated back shield were released from Schiaparelli prior to the final phase, during which its nine thrusters should have slowed it to a standstill just above the surface.

The other new feature is a fuzzy dark patch roughly 15 x 40 metres in size and about 1 km north of the parachute. This is interpreted as arising from the impact of the Schiaparelli module itself following a much longer free fall than planned, after the thrusters were switched off prematurely.

The landing ellipse is 100 km x 15 km, and is centred on 2 degrees south in latitude and 353 degrees east longitude, in the Meridiani Planum region of Mars, close to the planet’s equator. The image measures about 100 km; north is up.

The dark spot on the image, associated with the Schiaparelli module, is located approximately 5.4 km west of the centre of the landing ellipse.

Read more:
www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Space_Science/ExoMars/Mars_Rec…

Credit: Main image: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS, Arizona State University; inserts: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

MRO image of Schiaparelli
21-10-2016 07:12 PM CEST

europeanspaceagency posted a photo:

MRO image of Schiaparelli

A NASA Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter Context Camera (CTX) image taken on 20 October 2016. This is the ‘after’ image in the pair of images taken to locate the Schiaparelli entry, descent and landing demonstrator module, which shows two new features appearing following the arrival of the module on 19 October.

One of the features is bright and can be associated with the 12-m diameter parachute used in the second stage of Schiaparelli’s descent, after the initial heat shield entry. The parachute and the associated back shield were released from Schiaparelli prior to the final phase, during which its nine thrusters should have slowed it to a standstill just above the surface.

The other new feature is a fuzzy dark patch roughly 15 x 40 metres in size and about 1 km north of the parachute. This is interpreted as arising from the impact of the Schiaparelli module itself following a much longer free fall than planned, after the thrusters were switched off prematurely.

Read more:
www.esa.int/Our_Activities/Space_Science/ExoMars/Mars_Rec…

Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech/MSSS

Kathmandu, Nepal
21-10-2016 10:18 AM CEST

europeanspaceagency posted a photo:

Kathmandu, Nepal

Part of Nepal including its capital city, Kathmandu, and the Himalayan foothills are pictured in this satellite image.

Vegetation appears red in this false-colour image, while waterways and buildings appear light green and blue.

Surrounded by four mountain ranges, Kathmandu valley at the top of the image is recognised as a UNESCO World Heritage Site for its temples and monuments. However, some of these sites collapsed during the April 2015 earthquake that struck the region, claiming thousands of lives and causing widespread damage throughout the valley.

One of the easier features to pick out of satellite images are airports, and the runways of the Tribhuvan International Airport are clearly visible near the centre of the valley.

A ‘ring road’ runs around central Kathmandu city and parts of surrounding cities, and from the southern tip of the airport runways we can follow the road south before it changes direction northwest and continues around the city.

This image demonstrates just a slice of Nepal’s varied terrain: from the mountains to the north to the plains in the south. We can see how water runs off of the mountains, forming large rivers that cut through the forested plain, with some areas of agriculture. The lower part of the image appears hazier than the mountainous areas because humidity is higher in the plains.

This image, also featured on the Earth from Space video programme, was captured by the Copernicus Sentinel-2A satellite on 28 December 2015: www.esa.int/spaceinvideos/Videos/2016/10/Earth_from_Space…

Credit: Contains modified Copernicus Sentinel data (2015), processed by ESA

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