The European Space Agency’s ExoMars orbiter tested its instruments and collected images of the Martian surface.
As a joint endeavor between ESA and Roscosmos, the Trace Gas Orbiter reached Mars in October.
ExoMars: Expanding Potential for Space Exploration
The orbiter spent time testing its instruments. From November 20 until November 28, the orbiter made pivotal calculations that could help researchers know more about our neighboring planet.
The primary goal of the orbiter is to explore the gaseous compositions that make up less than 1 percent of the atmosphere’s volume. These gases include water vapor, nitrogen dioxide, acetylene and most importantly, methane.
As seen in the video, the first image was captured around 44 minutes before the orbiter came closest to the planet. Taken from a distance of nearly 3300 miles, with a resolution of 60 m/pixel, ESA.int said the image shows how the space agency “acquires data by taking images in color simultaneously: at panchromatic, red, near-infrared and blue wavelengths.”
ExoMars: First images of the Martian surface
Another image taken during the orbiter’s closest approach to the planet, at almost 146 miles, has been presented. Flying over the Hebes Chasma region, the highest resolution data acquired is at 2.8 m/pixel.
The orbiter also took a picture of the Arisa Chasmata, located on the flanks of a volcano called Arsia Mons. Additionally, an image shows a crater measuring nearly a mile in diameter located on the rim of a larger crater.