ESA Science & Technology - EChO
The Exoplanet Characterization Observatory (EChO) was a candidate mission for the M3 launch opportunity in ESA's Cosmic Vision programme. The mission was designed to measure the chemical composition and structure of hundred(s) of exoplanet atmospheres, with uninterrupted spectroscopic coverage from visible to infrared wavelengths. EChO targets would extend from gas giants (Jupiter- or Neptune-like) to super-Earths, in the very hot to temperate zones of F to M-type host stars, opening up the way to large-scale, comparitive planetology that would firmly place our own Solar System in the context of other planetary systems in the Milky Way. In February 2014 the PLATO mission was selected for the M3 launch opportunity.
21 October 2013The five M3-candidate missions (EChO, LOFT, MarcoPolo-R, PLATO, STE-QUEST) were presented to the scientific community on 21 January 2014, in Paris, France. The presentations given at this event are available to download now.
Announcement of Opportunity for the provision of scientific payload including SGS elements for the M3 mission candidates
24 September 2012Proposals are solicited for the scientific payload, including Science Ground Segment (SGS) elements, of the M3 candidate missions EChO, LOFT, MarcoPolo-R, and STE-QUEST. The deadline for submission of proposals is 30 November 2012, 12:00 CET.
18 December 2013Reference: ESA-ECHO-RP-0001, Issue 1. EChO, an Exoplanet Characterisation Observatory, is one of five candidate missions for the M3 launch opportunity. A Preliminary Requirements Review (PRR) of all candidate missions has been performed to review their status in support of the M3 selection. This document reports the results of the technical and...
18 December 2013Reference: SRE-PA/2011.040/, Issue 3, Revision 2. This document provides a detailed description of the ESA EChO radiometric model. This model will be used to validate the mission requirements, which have, in turn, been derived from the science requirements.
12 December 2013Reference: SRE-PA/2011.038; Issue 3. This document aims at providing a complete and comprehensive list of all high level mission requirements (including spacecraft and payload, launcher, ground segment and operations) necessary to achieve the science goals detailed in the EChO Science Requirements Document (SRE-PA/2011.037).
18 December 2013Reference: ECHO-SRE-SA-PHASEA-010, Issue 2. A Design Reference Mission, hereafter the EChO Core Survey, has been constructed for the Exoplanet Characterisation Observatory in order to determine the mission lifetime required to fulfil the science requirements.
22 July 2011The document summarizes the study performed at ESA's Concurrent Design Facility (CDF), with the goals to assess the technical feasibility of the ECHO mission proposal and design an example mission compatible with achieving the science goals.