News archive

News archive

Representatives of Spanish industry and the media yesterday joined stafffrom ESA and the Villafranca del Castillo Satellite Tracking Station site(VILSPA) near Madrid to celebrate the inauguration of the VIL-1 antennathat will be used for the ambitious Cluster II mission.
Published: 19 May 2000
The Rosetta Structural Thermal Model (STM) arrived safely in Turin today,marking the start of the next stage in the construction of ESA's cometchaser.
Published: 19 May 2000
Representatives of ESA and many other European organisations gathered inParis yesterday to discuss the threat from Near-Earth Objects (NEOs).Non-ESA participants included the Secretary General of the InternationalAstronomical Union, delegates from several ESA member states, experts froma number of astronomical observatories, including the European SouthernObservatory, and a representative from the European Community.
Published: 17 May 2000
To demonstrate the remarkable ability of XMM-Newton to discover faintX-ray sources, a series of observations is being made in the areaknown as the 'Lockman hole'.In the Ursa Major northern hemisphere constellation - thethird-largest constellation better known as Great Bear or as the BigDipper - the Lockman hole region is one of the best studied fields inX-ray astronomy. In this direction absorbing material such as dustand galactic hydrogen is at its most sparse, and through this 'hole'sensitive searches for extragalactic objects hold great promise andhave already brought a much greater understanding of X-ray backgroundradiation.
Published: 17 May 2000
Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and the Sun all appear in the same imagesent to Earth yesterday (15 May) by the SOHO spacecraft. The picturewith four planets is another scoop for SOHO. Venus entered the scenefrom the right on 15 May, while Mercury was on its way out on the left.
Published: 16 May 2000
Mercury, Venus, Jupiter, Saturn and the Sun all appear in the same imagesent to Earth today (15 May) by the SOHO spacecraft. The picturewith four planets is another scoop for SOHO. Venus entered the scenefrom the right on 13 May, while Mercury was on its way out on the left.
Published: 15 May 2000
This week's 34th Cluster Science Working Team (SWT) meeting coincided withgood news from the project team.
Published: 12 May 2000
The Tycho Brahe Planetarium in Copenhagen hosts from today a full-scale mock-up of ESA4s satellite Planck, as the main element of an exhibition officially opened today by the Danish Minister of Research, Birte Weiss.
Published: 12 May 2000
It is planned to publish the proceedings of the EGS PS2 session dedicated to the planet Mercury, in Planetary and Space Science. This special issue is also open to contributions which were not presented in Nice, provided that they are directly related to Mercury science. Papers on missions, technologies and instrumentation specific to the exploration of Mercury are also invited. Deadline for submissions 31 July 2000
Published: 12 May 2000
On 18 May 2000, the European Space Agency (ESA) will inaugurate the VIL-1 antenna that will be used for the Cluster II mission to the magnetosphere. The newly refurbished antenna, which is located at the Villafranca del Castillo Satellite Tracking Station site (VILSPA) near Madrid, has been selected as the prime communication link with the Cluster II spacecraft.
Published: 10 May 2000
A major landmark in the Rosetta development programme will be reached thisweek when the final tests on the Structural Thermal Model (STM) arecompleted.Since last year, the 3 tonne STM has been subjected to an extensive seriesof tests at the European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) inThe Netherlands, in order to ensure that the spacecraft can survive therigours of interplanetary space travel. The final sequence of checks beganon 2 May when an emergency separation test was conducted on the RosettaLander.
Published: 9 May 2000
Calibration of XMM-Newton's science instruments is continuing at a steady pace in view of the start of the operational phase of the mission next month. Since the end of commissioning, ESA's new X-ray space observatory has been viewing an average of one or more calibration target every day.One such target has been NGC 2516, a young open cluster in the southern hemisphere.
Published: 8 May 2000
A development full-scale model of the European Space Agency's Huygens probe greeted those attending the General Assembly of the European Geophysical Society when they arrived at Nice airport last week. The model symbolised ESA's direct involvement in a very large number of the issues being discussed at the EGS's millennium conference on Earth, Planetary and Solar System Sciences which attracted 4500 participants from 50 nations between 24-29 April. Many of the principal investigators and scientists working on current and future ESA missions were present, as were representatives of other space agencies.
Published: 5 May 2000
With ESA's SMART-1 leading the way in 2002, the first half of this decade will be seeing a small flotilla of spacecraft exploring the Moon. These projects and their lunar science objectives were evoked with enthousiasm at the Annual General Assembly of the European Geophysical Society held in Nice, France between 24-29 April.
Published: 5 May 2000
Updated 8 MayA very successful session entitled "The Jovian and Saturnian systems: surfaces and atmospheres - The Cassini/Huygens mission to Saturn and Titan" took place from 28 to 29 April, as part of the 2000 Assembly of the European Geophysics Society in Nice. The audience included mission scientists and their collaborators and many other scientists not directly involved with the mission, who shared the same feelings that the swingbys around Venus and the Earth had not only allowed an unique opportunity for instrument calibration operations, but had also been bringing a considerable amount of new and unique science data.
Published: 4 May 2000
For followers of Nostradamus, this is a chance to relish. What better time than the year 2000 - prelude to the new millennium -- to predict all sorts of catastrophes driven by celestial objects? And the planets, jointly taunting the doomsayers, have chosen to dance together before their eyes. Mars, Jupiter and Saturn clustered for the first time on 6 April, within a circle 9 degrees wide. On 14 April, they gathered again in a 5-degree circle. And last month's dance was just a prelude to this month's fiesta. On 5 May, Mercury, Venus, the Moon and the Sun join in too, grouping in a circle of 26 degrees.
Published: 4 May 2000
Where to land?If you're going to send a lander to look for life on Mars, you need to choose a landing site with a good chance of harbouring life - preferably a place where water once deposited layers of sediment. "But even with MOC data (MOC is the high resolution camera on board NASA's Mars Global Surveyor), we don't know exactly which kind of environment we're going to meet," Gian Ori from the Universita d'Annunzio, Pescara, Italy told a session of the European Geophysical Society's millennium conference in Nice, France, last week (25-29 April 2000).
Published: 3 May 2000
After more than two weeks of being boiled and then frozen, the Rosetta spacecraft has shown that it can withstand the extreme temperatures to be encountered on its 11 year odyssey to Comet Wirtanen.On 16 April, the Rosetta Structural Thermal Model (STM) completed a prolonged series of tests in the Large Space Simulator, a giant thermal-vacuum chamber at the European Space Research and Technology Centre (ESTEC) at Noordwijk in TheNetherlands. Preliminary results show that the spacecraft behaved as expected, and engineers are confident that ESA's comet chaser will be ableto survive successfully its journey beyond the asteroid belt and back.
Published: 3 May 2000
Not many people enjoy the privilege of having their name displayed inlights. Even fewer people have their name immortalised by having a heavenlyobject named after them. One of this select company was a Dutch astronomer,Jan Oort, who was born 100 years ago today.
Published: 28 April 2000
Queen's Day in Holland will be celebrated on Saturday 29 April with visitsby Queen Beatrix to the coastal towns of Katwijk and Leiden. One of theevents planned for this day of national celebration is the launch of15 000 Cluster balloons from the ESA - Space Expo site on the KatwijkBoulevard.
Published: 28 April 2000
21-Sep-2021 10:44 UT

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