Stack Exchange Network

Stack Exchange network consists of 175 Q&A communities including Stack Overflow, the largest, most trusted online community for developers to learn, share their knowledge, and build their careers.

Visit Stack Exchange

Questions tagged [esa]

Questions related to structure, operations, missions, and facilities of the European Space Agency, an intergovernmental organization of 20 European states and Canada.

3
votes
1answer
147 views

If the ESA has its own deep space network, why does it use NASA's?

The European Space Agency has its own network for communicating for spacecraft in deep space, ESTRACK. It has stations distributed around the globe: Nonetheless, several ESA missions use NASA's Deep ...
5
votes
0answers
84 views

How does European jurisdiction in the ISS works?

This answer notes that participant nations have jurisdiction over their modules. So in a US module, you are in US jurisdiction, etc. Which means that in an European module, you are in European ...
1
vote
1answer
44 views

Why can Cryosat's dual antenna “better discern steep slopes” of Antarctic ice than Sentinel-3?

The BBC's Climate change: Satellite fix safeguards Antarctic data explains that earlier problems of missing data near the coasts have been addressed, and though scientists are hopeful, there is ...
2
votes
1answer
126 views

Is it justified that ESA is pushing to launch Rosalind Franklin even after Schiaparelli landing failed? [closed]

As far as I am aware, ESA has not achieved a successful martian landing yet. Why is it still a good idea to try with full-scale rover, weighting more than Opportunity and Spirit (though less than ...
5
votes
1answer
112 views

Why does ExoMars have more landing ellipse flexibility in 2020 than in 2018?

The BBC's ExoMars: Where to send Europe's robot rover? discusses the decision-making faced by the ExoMars Site Selection Working Group. The working group will spend Thursday and Friday discussing ...
3
votes
1answer
88 views

Help understanding BepiColombo's weak capture at Mercury's L1 and need for delta-differential one-way range measurements

This four-minute BBC podcast Mission to Mercury: BepiColombo spacecraft ready for launch highlights several challenges of the BepiColombo mission, including its orbital-mechanical aspects and is worth ...
3
votes
1answer
101 views

How can we see RemoveDebris capturing a satellite with a net?

The BBC's RemoveDebris: UK satellite nets 'space junk' says: The aptly named RemoveDebris satellite took a video of its net experiment. The short sequence shows a small, shoebox-sized object ...
1
vote
1answer
100 views

How does the contest for naming ExoMars work?

ESA is holding a contest to collect suggestions for a proper name for what is currently referred to as the ExoMars rover mission to Mars (mission page). Apparently, Rovy McRoverface and Marsy ...
0
votes
2answers
142 views

What ESA video contains this “family portrait” of comet-visiting spacecraft?

I don't use (or condone) FaceBook, but nonetheless I stumbled upon this page from a search: https://www.facebook.com/ISEE3Reboot/photos/a.801544933207256.1073741827.800538433307906/1384594101569000/?...
2
votes
1answer
178 views

What is the ESA Grip experiment, and why does it require Alexander Gerst to be strapped into it?

The text of this 14-June-2018 astronews.com tweet translated into English via google says: IMAGE OF THE DAY: Today's picture of the day shows the German ESA ...
3
votes
1answer
298 views

Why has the number of European space launches dropped in 2018?

There is a table of space launches from wikipedia in 2018 (Images have been updated on July 11, 2018): For now about half of year has been passed, but share of ESA launches is comparable with share of ...
12
votes
2answers
671 views

What is the large circular device with a dozen concentric circles on Sentinel 3B?

The Spaceflight Now article Photos: Sentinel 3B satellite prepared for launch from Plesetsk Cosmodrome has of course lots of photos. One of them shows a dish antenna covered with shiny, metallized ...
2
votes
1answer
122 views

How will the corner cube retroreflector array be used on Sentinel 3B?

The Spaceflight Now article Photos: Sentinel 3B satellite prepared for launch from Plesetsk Cosmodrome has of course lots of photos. One of them shows a dish antenna covered with shiny, metallized ...
4
votes
2answers
254 views

Why is Sentinel 3B's dish antenna overwrapped with metallized film?

The Spaceflight Now article Photos: Sentinel 3B satellite prepared for launch from Plesetsk Cosmodrome has of course lots of photos. One of them shows a dish antenna covered with shiny, metallized ...
5
votes
1answer
107 views

Why does ExoMars need stereo ground-penetrating radar “eyes”?

In the BBC News article Europe's Mars rover takes shape there is a short video describing the Structural and Thermal Model (STM) of the ExoMars Rover. After describing the drill box, the narrator in ...
4
votes
1answer
1k views

Why has ESA never flown a crewed spacecraft?

According to Wikipedia, ESA has never had a crewed spacecraft. While this is reasonable, it's striking that no ESA crewed spacecraft is in development right now. What's the rationale behind this ...
16
votes
2answers
5k views

Is 678 km the new altitude record for a rocket shot “straight up” (vertical launch)?

The Space Daily April 10th Rocket Science item Europe's largest sounding rocket launched from Esrange says: MAXUS 9, Europe's largest sounding rocket for experiments in microgravity, successfully ...
5
votes
2answers
411 views

MetOp-A; Why this unusual solar panel shape and deployment method?

This solar panel is closer to square than most solar panels I've seen, which tend to be very long - length/width ratio perhaps 4 to 6. This looks like only 1.5, and it seems to be located at the end ...
2
votes
1answer
257 views

Why does NASA and other space agencies seem to rarely if ever complain over the state of the budget?

The question is why and how the politics plays into this. Why does NASA and other space agencies usually not (if ever) complain about their minuscule budgets? I can only assume that doing so would be ...
7
votes
1answer
270 views

Insight on EDM Schiaparelli's IMU error and subsequent failed landing

Read this SpaceNews article which states,'1 second of Inertial Measurement error' caused the devastation in the Schiaparelli's landing sequence, causing it to free fall for 3.7 kms. What is exactly ...
7
votes
1answer
173 views

Was it ever suggested to merge ESA with Roscosmos?

ESA, the European Space Agency, is (formally) independent of other international cooperations like the European Union. After the fall of the Soviet Union, were there ever any proposals for ESA to join ...
0
votes
1answer
221 views

Is this a first Mars aerobraking for ESA, or for anyone?

In the ESA video ExoMars at the Red Planet after about 02:10, it says: With ExoMars, ESA is going to use for the first time, a method called aerobraking for a spacecraft in orbit around Mars... ...
0
votes
0answers
91 views

Space exploration career opportunities for Europeans?

My goal is to establish a career in space exploration. What opportunities are there in Europe and how can I best prepare? I am willing to do all it takes to maximise my chances of working in this ...
0
votes
1answer
74 views

What is 'green green' weather?

During the today (24/08/16) launch of Ariane 5, Stéphane Israël (chairman & CEO) tells that all conditions are good, including a green green weather. Is it a shortcut for no wind, no rain, or ...
2
votes
2answers
104 views

Where can I find data on current space agency contracts?

I'm trying to compile a list of current space contracts held by NASA, the CSA, and any other space-related agency so that I can get a feel for what the most heavily researched areas are. What are ...
4
votes
3answers
428 views

Possible places for a launch complex in UK and continental Europe

Reading "Britain selects U.S., French, British teams to study spaceport feasibility" — I can imagine places in Europe for retrograde or polar launches, but are there places where standard LEO/...
15
votes
3answers
4k views

How will the UK leaving the EU affect ESA?

Now that the UK has voted to leave the European Union, how is that going to affect the European Space Agency? How much funding and participation does ESA receive from the UK based on the EU ...
5
votes
1answer
336 views

Would it make sense to salvage parts of the ISS as it is decommissioned?

The ESA recently announced plans to develop a station halfway to the moon. This station would, I presume, serve as the next international station replacing the ISS. While I understand that the ISS ...
1
vote
0answers
367 views

How does NASA compare with other space agencies in terms of RoI (in terms of science: papers published per $ invested) [closed]

How does NASA's funding compare to other space agencies' funding? How many papers are they publishing and how many US patents do they have? Compare different space agencies in terms of number of ...
8
votes
2answers
944 views

Why Proton launcher for ExoMars, and not Ariane?

I know that ESA is cooperating with Roscosmos on the ExoMars project. But what were the reasons of selecting a Proton launch vehicle instead of Ariane? Is it because Baikonur is a more favourable ...
9
votes
1answer
317 views

What is the status of ESA's proposed human mission to the Moon?

As part of the Aurora Exploration Programme, there is a proposed human mission to the Moon in 2024. The astronaut capsule would be launched atop an Ariane 5 rocket. What is the status of this mission?...
5
votes
2answers
575 views

Are commercial rocket launches by ESA profitable?

ESA provides commercial satellite launches. But is this actually a profitable business? When you would subtract the cost of any purely scientific activities and only look at the commercial launches, ...
1
vote
1answer
164 views

How much of the Orion vehicle will be built or provided by Airbus/ESA?

Does this mean that, for all the fanfare, the USA's actual contribution to the future of human-flight space exploration based on this particular vehicle is now rather less than is economically-...
7
votes
1answer
178 views

Is there such a thing as the Freedom of Information Act for the ESA?

Is data produced by the European Space Agency covered by any such thing as the Freedom of Information Act like in the United States? That is, are data produced by ESA programs freely available much ...
2
votes
0answers
136 views

Does naming cargo space craft indicate intentions?

ESA committed to launching 5 ATV vehicles. All 5 were named. JAXA has committed to a limited number of HTV launches. And all have been named. Orbital has contracted for 8 launches, and seems to be ...
10
votes
2answers
874 views

Excluding Russia, has Europe launched a single satellite or spacecraft into Earth's orbit and beyond from its own continent?

I was going through the list of European rocket launch sites on Wikipedia, and I can't find a single reference for an orbited satellite launched from any of them. Honestly, I wasn't even aware of most ...
5
votes
1answer
569 views

Which launch sites were considered for Ariane 6?

I often see it mentioned that the selection of the launch site for Ariane 6 was one of the preliminary requirements that froze its final design. That does make sense, especially since there was some ...
9
votes
2answers
412 views

What is the flight plan to get Gaia in orbit around the Sun–Earth $L_2$ Lagrangian point?

Gaia is a planned European Space Agency's (ESA) space observatory that will aim to chart a three-dimensional map of our Galaxy, the Milky Way. It is planned to operate around the Sun–Earth $L_2$ (SEL2)...
13
votes
1answer
1k views

Where is Giotto now?

Launched in 1985, ESA's Giotto became the first spacecraft to visit a comet. Since then it has done at least some Earth flybys/slingshots to visit other comets. This image from the Wiki article ...
6
votes
1answer
928 views

Swarm: Is ESA launching another set of aerodynamically streamlined satellites into LEO without any self-destruct system onboard?

ESA's GOCE (Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer) satellite is receiving a lot of attention these days, ever since it was announced it ran out of Xenon propellant used by its ion ...
17
votes
2answers
1k views

Do astronauts aboard the International Space Station (ISS) actually use their legs?

The European Space Agency writes to say ◾The applicant must have the normal range of motion and functionality in all joints. Historically, IMHO, astronauts came from a flight/test-pilot background....
13
votes
3answers
1k views

Why are Europe’s Air & Space Academy and DLR urging ESA and CNES to reconsider the use of solid fuels for the proposed Ariane 6?

With Ariane 6 launch site selected, CNES (Centre National d’Etudes Spatiales, the French space agency) was aiming to freeze the design of the new rocket in May 24, 2013. A few days after and that same ...
17
votes
3answers
12k views

How much of an advantage do equator-proximal launch sites provide?

Comparing ESA's Kourou (5° off) with NASA's Cape Canaveral (28°) and JAXA's Tanegashima (30°) launch sites, how advantageous is proximity to the equator? Considering the fact that the ESA and all of ...
13
votes
1answer
4k views

Why did the ESA choose SPARC for LEON?

In late 1997, the European Space Agency started the LEON project to provide higher performance processors for ESA missions. An open instruction set architecture was a first-level requirement (both to ...