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.
ESA selects planet-hunting PLATO mission
19 February 2014A space-based observatory to search for planets orbiting alien stars has been selected today as ESA's third medium-class science mission. It is planned for launch by 2024.
Cosmic Vision M3 candidate missions presentation event
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.
EChO Assessment Study Report (Yellow Book)
16 December 2013Reference: ESA/SRE(2013)2. This is the Assessment Study Report (also known as the Yellow Book) for EChO - a candidate mission for the M3 launch opportunity in Cosmic Vision.
EChO Preliminary Requirements Review Technical Report
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...
EChO Science Requirements Document
13 December 2013Reference: SRE-PA/2011.037; Issue 3. This document provides the top-level science requirements for the Exoplanet Characterisation Observatory (EChO), a dedicated mission to investigate exoplanetary atmospheres.
EChO Radiometric Model Description
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.
EChO Mission Requirements Document
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).
EChO Payload Definition Document
14 September 2012Reference: SRE-PA/2011.039; Issue 3. This document aims at providing the description of the EChO reference payload complement.
EChO Design Reference Mission Document
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.
EChO External Final Presentation of the CDF study
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.
EChO Mission Proposal
3 December 2010This is the the EChO mission proposal that was submitted in 2010 to ESA in response to the Call for medium-size (M-class) missions in the Cosmic Vision 2015-2025 plan with a launch opportunity in the period 2020-22.