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Europe Asks Thales Alenia Space For The Price Of A Mars Robotic Rover

Price check
by Staff Writers
Cannes, France (UPI) Jul 27, 2007
The European Space Agency has asked Cannes, France, satellite manufacturer Thales Alenia Space to quote a price on the construction of a Mars rover. The French-Italian satellite company announced it will convene a meeting of its major contractors next week to discuss the rover, which the ESA is planning to send to Mars in 2013, the BBC reported Thursday.

ESA delegations approved the general outline of the ExoMars rover concept in June and industrial workers are now facing a period of refinement and testing for the details of the concept. The vehicle, which is designed to travel over the surface of the red planet in search of past or present life, will be outfitted with a series of scientific instruments.

"We now have a deadline of 8 October for delivery of the full committing proposal from industry," said Vincenzo Giorgio at Thales Alenia Space, the lead industrial partner on the ExoMars project.

"This is a challenge not only because there is August -- normally a holiday all over Europe -- but also because two months is a major challenge anyway to make a full blown proposal," he said.

Source: United Press International

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Search For Life In Martian Ice Relies On UK Technology
London UK (SPX) Jul 26, 2007
The Martian surface will be explored for conditions favourable for past or present life thanks to micro-machine technology supplied by Imperial College London. The NASA mission, planned for August 2007, represents the first chance for UK hardware to contribute to the exploration of Mars since the failed Beagle 2 spacecraft launched in 2003. Dr Tom Pike and his team at Imperial's Department of Electrical and Electronic Engineering have provided substrates-surfaces used to hold samples for imaging-for the Mars Phoenix mission.









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