The EXOMARS mission – searching for life on Mars
We know ever increasingly more about the Red Planet and its environment, but the question of whether life ever existed on Mars still remains an open one. At the moment Mars is a frozen desert, however, many scientists are of the opinion that billions of years ago it could have had a completely different climate. Was there, then, or even is there, life on Mars?
The answer to the question of whether or not there was, or is, life on Mars is to be delivered by a large European-Russian mission called EXOMARS, which began in 2016. Its goal is to search for biological signs of life on the Red Planet.
Scientists from all of Europe, including Poland, are engaged in the EXOMARS mission. Our company has served an important role in the preparation of the mission, which consisted of surface assembly (SMT) of elements of the power supply system of the advanced CaSSiS camera. The camera takes stereographic colour photographs of the surface of Mars in high resolution.
The ambitious EXOMARS space mission, which we are engaged in, is a fantastic example of a strictly scientific initiative with broadening our knowledge of the surrounding world as its only goal.
The ambitious EXOMARS space mission realised in cooperation between the European Space Agency and the Space Agency of the Russian Federation began in 2016. Its main goal is the search for biological signs of life on Mars. Scientists from all over Europe, including Poland, which has been a member of ESA since 2012, have been taking part in this breakthrough project.
Creotech Instruments S.A., working by assignment from the Space Research Centre of the Polish Academy of Sciences realised its goal, which was the surface assembly (SMT) of elements of the power supply system of the advanced CaSSiS camera. The camera delivers stereographic colour photographs of the surface of Mars in high resolution. It is used for photographing rock formations that the scientists connect to emitting minute quantities of gases. These might be a sign of geological processes the surface of Mars undergoes, but they might also be proof that the Red Planet once had, or still has, life on it. In March of 2016 a probe with the apparatus has been moved into outer space and towards Mars.
The EXOMARS mission consists of four space platforms that will be launched towards the Red Planet in two stages. In 2016, the Russian Proton rocket took the „Schiaparelli EDM” lander researching the meteorological conditions on Mars and the „ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter” orbiter searching the surface of the planet for signs of gases connected to life or geological processes into outer space. In 2018 a second Russian Proton rocket sent the „ExoMars Rover” rover searching for signs of biological life and the „ExoMars Rover Lander” lander, which will allow the rover to safely land on the surface of the planet, towards Mars.
The EXOMARS mission is a fantastic example of a strictly scientific initiative the goal of which is broadening the knowledge of the surrounding world. The mission is also a chance to bring us closer to one of the most fundamental questions of philosophy and science – „Is there life outside of Earth?”. This brings us even more enjoyment in having been engaged in the realisation of this project.