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The Insterstellar Heliopause Probe

The Insterstellar Heliopause Probe

Publication date: 29 April 2005

Authors: Lyngvi, A., et al.

Journal: Proceedings of 55th International Astronautical Congress, Vancouver, Canada, 2004
Year: 2005

Copyright: ESA

The Interstellar Heliopause Probe (IHP) is one of four Technology Reference Studies (TRS) introduced by the Planetary Exploration Studies Section of the Science Payload & Advanced Concepts Office (SCI-A) at ESA. The overall purpose of the TRSs is to focus the development of strategically important technologies of likely relevance to future science missions. This is accomplished through the study of several technologically demanding and scientifically interesting missions, which are currently not part of the ESA science programme. The TRS baseline uses small satellites (~ 200kg), with highly miniaturized and highly integrated payload suites. By using multiple low resource spacecraft in a phased approach, the risk and cost, compared to a single, high resource mission can be reduced.

Equipped with a Highly Integrated Payload Suite the IHP will answer scientific questions concerning the nature of the interstellar medium, how the interstellar medium affects our solar system and how the solar system impacts the interstellar medium.

This paper will present an update to the results of the studies being performed on this mission. The current mission baseline and alternative propulsion systems will be described and the spacecraft design and other enabling technologies will be discussed.

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