The engineers tested the ability of the mission ExoMars in «emergency» mode

© Photo : ESA/AOES MedialabРисунок Rover ExoMars programmeThe engineers tested the ability of the mission ExoMars in «emergency» mode© Photo : ESA/AOES Medialab

Tested the ability of the mission ExoMars in a special «emergency» mode, which can move the spacecraft in the event of a failure of hardware or software that require rebooting of the onboard computer, according to «Roskosmos».

The experiment was carried out on 13 August, when the distance between Earth and Mars was over 397 million kilometers. As part of the integration test was carried out the reception of information from spacecraft TGO from three ground stations: antenna systems of state Corporation «Roscosmos» (Kalyazin, Russia), ESA (new Norcia, Australia) and NASA (Canberra, Australia).

«Kalyazin was able to signal, demonstrating that all three terrestrial networks can provide project ExoMars in the worst case, when Mars is at the farthest distance, and the signals are the weakest. Thus it was tested the ability to work in a special «emergency» mode, which can move the spacecraft in the event of a failure of hardware or software that require rebooting of the onboard computer,» said Daniel Firre, ESA specialist, responsible for the terrestrial stations of other space agencies.

He stressed that the experiment was successful, receiving information carried out at all stations, and it once again demonstrated the potential of the teamwork and confirmed that the funds of the Russian complex (RKNY) to provide scientific data of the ExoMars project can provide a solution to the target task, including the more complex modes of implementation of the flight mission.

«If our Orbiter or in the future with our spokeman apparatus on Mars will be a problem, we want to have confidence that we can work together even in the worst conditions that this experiment is very well demonstrated,» said for his part, the operating Manager of spacecraft Peter Schmitz.

The level of the received signal in this mode was about a thousand times less than in the case of receiving information from a mobile phone located on the moon.

From June 24 to 27 August, the process of braking of the spacecraft ExoMars TGO project about the atmosphere of Mars has been suspended, as at this time the red planet and TGO with an orbit of just over two thousand kilometers in height from the surface of Mars, located farthest from the Earth. At this time Mars was completely closed by the Sun or was so close to him that he was either impossible, extremely unstable.

In addition, 21 August, updating on-Board software of a spacecraft TGO, which was preceded by extensive preparatory work of the project team for verification and download the required software updates.

The restart process (update) on-Board software TGO was controlled by the ESA stations in new Norcia (Australia) and Malargue (Argentina). Given the characteristics of the geographical location of the stations ESA, 12.00-13.00, Moscow time, information from the TGO was carried out exclusively by Russian complex (RKNY) in Kalyazin (Tver oblast, Center of space communication JSC «OKB MEI»). At this time in the framework of the integration tests RCPMI carried out a successful reception of information which in real-time in full was transferred to the flight operations Centre of ESA (ESOC, Darmstadt, Germany).

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