News ESA's Future: The News and Updates Thread

Urwumpe

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Wishful thinking on ESA part. Maybe a few missions on. Can't see any but USA citizens getting on the first.
At least they all get on the surface.


With Trump? We can be glad if the thing will ever really get off the ground. Sure as hell no ESA astronaut on the first moon landings, maybe one on the last.



With a mentally healthy president? Depends on the crew size, but having two US astronauts and one ESA astronaut on the surface sounds feasible for negotiations. It would just cost us a few more bucks as we planned. Three US and one ESA would be even easier to negotiate.



But personally, I would prefer we would go the "Moon Village" path, define an open architecture and focus on the goal, not on the way how to get there.



Buy US capsules or Russian capsules, if no European company will offer such services. Even Chinese, who cares? It isn't that important. What is important is paving the way. Create infrastructure, that lasts. Don't go to the moon once - Keep on going, keep on learning, never stop living and learning in space. Ask the Africans, if they like to go the way with us, they are our southern neighbors after all. Right now, nothing would be worse than leaving space to nationalist dystopias. It's our space, too. Of every one of us.
 

4throck

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It all depends on €€€ and political will. ESA lacks both :rofl:
There's a Soyuz pad in Kourou. Why not fly manned from there ?
The Soyuz is capable of reaching lunar orbit...
 

Urwumpe

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It all depends on €€€ and political will. ESA lacks both :rofl:
There's a Soyuz pad in Kourou. Why not fly manned from there ?
The Soyuz is capable of reaching lunar orbit...


Well, mostly because it is specialized completely on this "first generation" launch vehicle. You can't use it for anything else. That is fine for the use case intended.



But I am more talking about having a common infrastructure for different launch vehicles on the same pad, only requiring a rented integration hall for getting the launcher assembled near the launch site and integrated into the GSE. No special pad for each launcher causing huge fixed costs independent of the launch rate.
 

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ESA / Enabling & Support / Space Transportation
ESA’s Prometheus is the precursor of ultra-low-cost rocket propulsion that is flexible enough to fit a fleet of new launch vehicles for any mission and will be potentially reusable.
At the Space19+ Council meeting in Seville, Spain last November, ESA received full funding to bring the current Prometheus engine design to a technical maturity suitable for industry. Developed by ArianeGroup, Prometheus is now seen as key in the effort to prepare competitive future European access to space.
By applying a design-to-cost approach to manufacturing Prometheus, ESA aims to lower the cost of production by a factor of ten of the current main stage Ariane 5 Vulcain 2 engine.

http://www.esa.int/Enabling_Support...oves_ahead_on_low-cost_reusable_rocket_engine
 

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Preparatory testing for Ireland’s first space mission, EIRSAT-1, seen taking place at ESA’s Hertz antenna test chamber.
Educational Irish Research Satellite 1, or EIRSAT-1 for short, is being built by students and staff of University College Dublin, who are participating in ESA Education’s Fly Your Satellite! programme.
At just 22 by 10 by 10 cm, the miniature EIRSAT-1 is smaller than a shoebox but is still equivalent in complexity to a standard space mission.

http://www.esa.int/ESA_Multimedia/Images/2020/06/Testing_for_Ireland_s_first_satellite
 

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The first artificial intelligence to be carried onboard a European Earth observation mission will be launched this week from Europe’s spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. The pioneering artificial intelligence technology named ɸ-sat-1, pronounced PhiSat-1, will be the first experiment to improve the efficiency of sending vast quantities of data back to Earth.

http://www.esa.int/Applications/Observing_the_Earth/Ph-sat/FSSCat_F-sat-1_ready_for_launch

An A.I. in orbit, what could possibly go wrong?
 

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A new sensor to identify lunar volatiles is being assembled in a clean room at The Open University, UK ahead of some exciting missions to the Moon.

The Ion Trap Mass Spectrometer (ITMS) imaged above is a part of an instrument that will detect lunar volatiles from both the extremely thin atmosphere of the Moon and from the lunar soil.

 

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North of Sweden and the Arctic Circle, ESA’s Kiruna ground station is celebrating 30 years looking skyward, connecting us to many of our beloved and most pioneering space explorers.
The station, equipped with two dish antennas 15 m and 13 m in diameter, is a crucial space gateway, bringing data down to Earth that lets us study our planet's oceans, water and atmosphere, understand weather patterns and the rapid advance of climate change.
 

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Meet the people behind the third European Service Module that will power and propel the next astronauts to land on the Moon in decades. The team at Thales Alenia Space in Turin, Italy pose with the now completed structure that acts as a backbone to the Service Module of the Orion spacecraft.
 

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Made me laugh... demonstrates nothing because a jet engine is not a rocket.
They ignore changing fuel mass and COG (as fuel gets consumed), rocket throttle control, etc.
Essentially they demonstrated the same control you have on a 30€ drone. Useless for rockets.

If this is news for ESA then things don't look bright.
 

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Probably helping Romania along the engineering path?
If I was a student there, I'd enjoy it.
 

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Sure, but that's not what they highlight on the article. They specifically mention booster recovery (meaning SpaceX style landing).
As a student / engineering project of course it's great! :) But not comparable at all to SpaceX...
 

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You can now find all Mars Express VMC AKA "Mars Webcam" pictures in the Planetary Science Archive:

 
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