Artists impression of Boom 2 deployed
The second 20-metre antenna boom of the MARSIS instrument on board Mars Express was successfully – and smoothly – deployed, confirmed today by the ground team at ESA’s European Space Operations Centre.
The command to deploy the second MARSIS boom was given to the spacecraft at 13:30 CEST on 14 June 2005. Shortly before the deployment started, Mars Express was set into a slow rotation to last 30 minutes during and after the boom extension. This rotation allowed all the boom’s hinges to be properly heated by the Sun.
Just after, an autonomous manoeuvre oriented the spacecraft towards the Sun, to have the spacecraft recharge its batteries and for a further heating of the hinges.
Fred Jansen | EurekAlert!
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