Friday, April 9, 2010

Two Tidbits

Thanks to anonymous for the link to a presentation on ESA's planned MoonNEXT mission that would land a craft near the moon's south pole.  From this presentation, it's clear that the lander would be expected to survive for some time -- instruments such as a seismometer are included in the list of possible instruments.  You can look at the presentation at 

The minutes from the last MEPAG meeting have been posted.  For the most part, they summarize the presentations and the findings echo those of the presenters.  However, the minutes note the MEPAG members' concerns that the 2016 Trace Gas Orbiter and the 2018 ExoMars and MAX-C rover missions "are already struggling with tight technical and financial margins.... The 2016 Orbiter mission has an ambitious program of scientific and technical objectives within a highly constrained resource box.  There is concern that, without dedicated effort on the part of both NASA and ESA, the mission's ability to address its compelling scientific objectives will be compromised during the development phase."   You can read the entire set of minutes at

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