Proposals and suggestions are sought from Industry, Technical Centres and the Scientific Community for mission concepts that would combine, in the spirit of exploration, technology development with first class science.
The Aurora Programme is composed of two main elements: a Core Programme, which aims to establish the ability of Europe to participate as a recognised partner in future international space exploration endeavours, and an Exploration Robotic Missions component with a first mission, ExoMars, which is now being implemented for launch in 2013.
At the time of the Aurora Programme approval, at the ESA Ministerial Council in December 2005 in Berlin, Ministers also recognised a Mars Sample Return (MSR) mission as the major milestone in the medium term for the exploration of Mars. Consequently the Core Programme includes significant technology development activities for the preparation of a MSR mission.
In view of the large financial resources required by such a mission it is assumed that MSR will be implemented in co-operation with international partners. Europe therefore needs to determine what the challenges are and which of the enabling capabilities would like to contribute to the MSR mission, consistent with its long term ambitions and goals.
To this end the Core Programme has initiated an MSR Phase A2 System Study, building on the results of two previous Phase A1 studies. In this frame Entry, Descent and Soft/Precision Landing on the one hand, and Autonomous Rendezvous and Docking/Capture on the other, were identified as key elements of interest for Europe.
As an intermediate step, after ExoMars and before the international context will allow the initiation of a MSR mission, the Executive considers proposing to the next Ministerial Council an 'ExoMars class' mission, for launch in the 2015–2018 timeframe.
Such a mission would demonstrate in particular key MSR technologies and achieve a step change in the European capabilities over and above present possible contributions to the MSR mission, whilst also providing an opportunity for scientific investigations. Ideas that would include aspects relevant to the human exploration scenario are welcome.
The mission will constitute the next mission of the Aurora Programme. As a working title this mission is named Next Exploration Science and Technology (NEXT) mission. It is the purpose of this Call for Ideas to collect from Industry, Technical Centres and the Scientific Community proposals/suggestions for mission concepts that would combine, in the spirit of exploration, technology development (focussed, but possibly not limited to the areas mentioned above) with first class science.
Preferably ideas should be submitted electronically, using the form provided and also available on this website. Documents should be sent as attachments to the following address: explorationcall @ esa.int not later than 13 April 2007.
Dietrich Vennemann | alfa
Moon's crust underwent resurfacing after forming from magma ocean
22.11.2017 | University of Texas at Austin
NASA's James Webb Space Telescope completes final cryogenic testing
21.11.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center
The WHO reports an estimated 429,000 malaria deaths each year. The disease mostly affects tropical and subtropical regions and in particular the African continent. The Fraunhofer Institute for Silicate Research ISC teamed up with the Fraunhofer Institute for Molecular Biology and Applied Ecology IME and the Institute of Tropical Medicine at the University of Tübingen for a new test method to detect malaria parasites in blood. The idea of the research project “NanoFRET” is to develop a highly sensitive and reliable rapid diagnostic test so that patient treatment can begin as early as possible.
Malaria is caused by parasites transmitted by mosquito bite. The most dangerous form of malaria is malaria tropica. Left untreated, it is fatal in most cases....
The formation of stars in distant galaxies is still largely unexplored. For the first time, astron-omers at the University of Geneva have now been able to closely observe a star system six billion light-years away. In doing so, they are confirming earlier simulations made by the University of Zurich. One special effect is made possible by the multiple reflections of images that run through the cosmos like a snake.
Today, astronomers have a pretty accurate idea of how stars were formed in the recent cosmic past. But do these laws also apply to older galaxies? For around a...
Just because someone is smart and well-motivated doesn't mean he or she can learn the visual skills needed to excel at tasks like matching fingerprints, interpreting medical X-rays, keeping track of aircraft on radar displays or forensic face matching.
That is the implication of a new study which shows for the first time that there is a broad range of differences in people's visual ability and that these...
Computer Tomography (CT) is a standard procedure in hospitals, but so far, the technology has not been suitable for imaging extremely small objects. In PNAS, a team from the Technical University of Munich (TUM) describes a Nano-CT device that creates three-dimensional x-ray images at resolutions up to 100 nanometers. The first test application: Together with colleagues from the University of Kassel and Helmholtz-Zentrum Geesthacht the researchers analyzed the locomotory system of a velvet worm.
During a CT analysis, the object under investigation is x-rayed and a detector measures the respective amount of radiation absorbed from various angles....
The quantum world is fragile; error correction codes are needed to protect the information stored in a quantum object from the deteriorating effects of noise. Quantum physicists in Innsbruck have developed a protocol to pass quantum information between differently encoded building blocks of a future quantum computer, such as processors and memories. Scientists may use this protocol in the future to build a data bus for quantum computers. The researchers have published their work in the journal Nature Communications.
Future quantum computers will be able to solve problems where conventional computers fail today. We are still far away from any large-scale implementation,...
15.11.2017 | Event News
15.11.2017 | Event News
30.10.2017 | Event News
22.11.2017 | Life Sciences
22.11.2017 | Life Sciences
22.11.2017 | Materials Sciences