Spaceflight Insider

News Archive / Tagged: ESA

  • Orion update for January 2017

    Mackenzie KaneJanuary 18th, 2017

    Before the end of 2016, progress on NASA's Orion capsule for Exploration Mission-1 (EM-1) took some significant leaps forward. The coming year looks to be no different – with the crew-rated spacecraft being prepared for its first flight atop SLS.

  • NASA delays contract awards for asteroid mission spacecraft

    Jim SharkeyJanuary 17th, 2017

    NASA is delaying contracts and other awards for its Asteroid Redirect Mission (ARM), originally planned for early this year, by a few months because of uncertainty about the space agency's budget.

  • Our SpaceFlight Heritage: 12 years ago, Huygens touched down on Titan

    Laurel KornfeldJanuary 14th, 2017

    Twelve years ago, on January 14, 2005, the European Space Agency's (ESA) Huygens probe touched down on the surface of Saturn's largest moon, Titan, where it collected images and data about a world viewed by many scientists as an analog of early Earth.

  • ISS’ power generation system to get crucial update

    Tomasz NowakowskiJanuary 3rd, 2017

    Two upcoming International Space Station (ISS) spacewalks slated for January are expected to result in a crucial update of the orbital lab’s power generating system. Expedition 50 crew are scheduled to venture outside the ISS on Jan. 6 and 13 in order to replace the old nickel-hydrogen batteries with new lithium-ion batteries on the station’s truss structure.

  • Success, setbacks and silence: 2016 in review

    Jason RhianDecember 31st, 2016

    CAPE CANAVERAL, Fla. — The past 12 months, for good or ill, have redefined space exploration. In 2016, efforts to expand the space frontier both resumed and retracted, visionaries made bold claims, while legends fell silent forever.

  • Orion service module engine shipped to Europe

    Bart LeahyDecember 17th, 2016

    NASA has shipped the Orion spacecraft’s main engine to Europe to be integrated with the European Space Agency’s Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV), which serves as the backbone of Orion’s Service Module.

  • Schiaparelli may be dead but TGO saves the ExoMars mission

    Tomasz NowakowskiNovember 24th, 2016

    More than one month has now passed since the arrival of Europe’s ExoMars mission at the Red Planet. Although the mission’s Schiaparelli module has crashed onto the Martian surface, the Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) is in excellent shape and prepares for science operations.

  • Soyuz MS-03 to send trio to ISS

    Derek RichardsonNovember 15th, 2016

    A new trio of space flyers is gearing up to launch toward the International Space Station. Launching atop a Soyuz rocket, the crew in their Soyuz MS-03 spacecraft is slated to leave terra firma at 2:20 a.m. local Kazakh time Nov. 18 (3:20 p.m. EST / 20:20 GMT Nov. 17) from Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan.

  • Ariane 6 gets full funding from ESA

    Tomasz NowakowskiNovember 12th, 2016

    Full funding for Europe’s new Ariane 6 launch vehicle has just been secured on Nov. 9 by ESA as the agency signed an amendment to its earlier agreement with Airbus Safran Launchers (ASL), the rocket’s manufacturer. The new deal unlocks $1.9 billion; the remainder of $2.6 billion for the development of Ariane 6 stipulated in an August 2015 agreement.

  • Lost on Mars: Schiaparelli lander falls silent shortly before touchdown

    Tomasz NowakowskiOctober 20th, 2016

    ESA still awaits a signal from its ExoMars "Schiaparelli" module, which was expected to land on Mars at 10:48 a.m. EDT (14:48 GMT) on Wednesday, Oct. 19. Contact with the spacecraft was lost about a minute before the planned touchdown on the Martian surface.

  • ExoMars mission arrives at the Red Planet after seven-month journey

    Tomasz NowakowskiOctober 19th, 2016

    Europe’s ExoMars 2016 mission has finally arrived at the Red Planet on October 19, completing a lengthy interplanetary trip. The Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) has been inserted into Martian orbit and the "Schiaparelli" module descended to the planet’s surface. However, the fate of the lander is currently unknown as ESA still awaits for the confirmation of the touchdown.

  • Herschel reveals role of starlight in forming building blocks of life

    Jim SharkeyOctober 16th, 2016

    ESA's Herschel Space Observatory has observed that ultraviolet light from stars plays a vital role in creating the precursor molecules that are essential for life.

  • DREAMS of Mars: Europe’s ExoMars mission in the middle of dust season

    Tomasz NowakowskiOctober 13th, 2016

    The joint ESA-Roscosmos ExoMars 2016 mission is a week away from arriving at Mars to answer important astrobiological questions. While the mission’s "Schiaparelli" demonstrator will focus on testing landing technologies, one of its scientific instruments will be in the right place at the right time to investigate the planet’s intense dust storms.

  • Kepler images Comet 67/P from afar

    Laurel KornfeldOctober 11th, 2016

    As the European Space Agency's (ESA) Rosetta mission spent its last month orbiting Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko, NASA's Kepler Space Telescope, designed to search for exoplanets, captured distant "big picture" views of the comet.

  • Rosetta mission ends with spacecraft’s descent onto comet

    Laurel KornfeldSeptember 30th, 2016

    The European Space Agency (ESA) ended its Rosetta mission at 7:19 a.m. EDT (11:19 GMT) Sept. 30 with a controlled touchdown of the spacecraft onto the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko.