Mars Express payload endorsed
23 June 1998ESA's Science Programme Committee confirmed the payload for Mars Express, at its meeting 28 May. Seven instruments have beenselected for the orbiter and the possibility left open to add a small lander.
Mars Express will be the first 'flexible mission' in the revised ESA long-term scientific programme and is planned to be launched towards Mars in June 2003 with a Soyuz/Fregat launcher. The spacecraft will carry a remote observation payload with some heritage from European instruments lost on the ill-fated Russian Mars 96 mission, as well as a lander communications package to support Mars lander missions from 2003 to 2007.