European Space Agency - updates

Rappler's latest stories on European Space Agency


New Mars rover named after DNA pioneer Rosalind Franklin

Feb 07, 2019 - 11:31 PM

Cambridge-educated Franklin 'helped us understand life on Earth and now her namesake will do the same on Mars,' says UK Science Minister Chris Skidmore

NEW MARS ROVER. A picture shows a working prototype of the newly named Rosalind Franklin ExoMars rover at the Airbus Defense and Space facility in Stevenage, north of London on February 7, 2019. Photo by Ben Stansall/AFP

NASA's hobbled Hubble telescope is near normal again

Oct 24, 2018 - 2:22 PM

An attempt to revive the gyroscope by turning it in the opposite direction appears to have cleared any blockage, NASA reports

EYE IN THE SKY. The Hubble Space Telescope floats against the background of Earth after a week of repair and upgrade by Space Shuttle Columbia astronauts in 2002. Image courtesy NASA/ Hubble Site

1st satellite to measure global winds set for launch

Aug 19, 2018 - 11:30 AM

The European Space Agency's Aeolus mission aims to improve short-term weather forecasting and understanding of man-made climate change

SATELLITE LAUNCH. The European Space Agency's Aeolus satellite will map the Earth's wind patterns. Photo courtesy of the ESA Multimedia Gallery

First lake of liquid water is discovered on Mars

Jul 25, 2018 - 10:48 PM

Located under a layer of Martian ice, the lake is about 12 miles (20 kilometers) wide, says the report led by Italian researchers in the US journal Science

MARS. NASA handout image obtained July 1, 2017 from NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter shows Gorgonum Basin, one of several large basins within the Terra Sirenum region of Mars. Handout photo by NASA/AFP

'Out of control' space lab to become celestial fireball on April 2 – China

Apr 01, 2018 - 5:14 PM

The Tiangong-1 is expected to make an uncontrolled earthbound plunge on Monday, April 2, but Chinese authorities say there is 'no need for people to worry'

Chinese technicians at the Jiuquan Space Centre monitor the Shenzhou-9 spacecraft as it prepares to link with the Tiangong-1 module just over a week into a manned space mission which includes China's first female astronaut, following an automatic docking, on June 24, 2012. The Chinese spacecraft on June 24 successfully completed the country's first manual docking in orbit, a milestone in an ambitious programme to build a space station by the end of the decade. CHINA OUT AFP PHOTO / AFP PHOTO / STR

Russia launches European satellite to monitor Earth's atmosphere

Oct 13, 2017 - 8:18 PM

'The Sentinel-5P satellite is now safely in orbit so it is up to our mission control teams to steer this mission into its operational life and maintain it for the next 7 years or more,' the agency's director general, Jan Woerner, says in a statement

LIFTOFF. A satellite is sent into orbit on Russian Rockot launcher at 09:27 GMT on Friday, October 13. Screen shot from ESA video.

Asteroid to shave past Earth inside Moon orbit – ESA

Aug 11, 2017 - 12:03 AM

It will not hit the Earth said Detlef Koschny of ESA s Near Earth Objects research team That s the most important thing to say

THE MOON FROM THE ISS. This NASA handout image of the Moon, released on August 8, 2017 was taken from his vantage point in low Earth orbit aboard the International Space Station, by NASA astronaut Randy Bresnik as he pointed his camera and captured this image on August 3, 2017. Handout photo from NASA / AFP

3-man crew reaches International Space Station

Jul 29, 2017 - 2:09 PM

The crew from Italy Russia and the United States boosts the ISS back to full capacity

LIFTOFF. In the Integration Facility at the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan, Expedition 52-53 crew members Paolo Nespoli of the European Space Agency (left), Sergey Ryazanskiy of the Russian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos, center) and Randy Bresnik of NASA (right) pose for pictures in front of the Soyuz MS-05 spacecraft. Photo by Andrey Shelepin/Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Center/NASA

Spacecraft revealed for first Europe mission to Mercury

Jul 06, 2017 - 8:06 PM

Set for launch in 2018 BepiColombo will be the European Space Agency s ESA first mission to the closest rock to the Sun

BEPICOLOMBO. The BepiColombo stack. Photo by C. Carreau/ESA

'Failed' clocks fresh blow for Europe's Galileo satnav

Jan 18, 2017 - 6:16 PM

UPDATED Designed to render Europe independent from America s GPS the 10 billion euro 11 billion project may experience further delays as the cause of the failure is investigated ESA director general Jan Woerner tells journalists

JAN WOERNER. ESA Director General speaks to media at the ESA Headquarters on January 18, 2017. Screen shot from livestream.

Two US astronauts on spacewalk to upgrade ISS

Jan 06, 2017 - 11:53 PM

The astronauts spacewalk is expected to last six and a half hours during which the pair will install adapter plates and electrical connections for 3 of 6 new lithium ion batteries installed on the station s truss

SPACEWALK. This NASA TV frame grab shows astronauts Shane Kimbrough and Peggy Whitson reloacating a battery on January 6, 2017 outside the International Space Station. Image from NASA TV / AFP

Galileo, Europe's own satnav system, goes live

Dec 15, 2016 - 7:22 PM

UPDATED After 17 years numerous setbacks and 3 times over budget Europe s Galileo satnav system goes live promising to outperform rivals and guarantee regional self reliance

GALILEO. This file photo taken on November 17, 2016 shows a handout released on November 17, 2016 by the European Space Agency (ESA), CNES, and the Arianespace satellite launch company shows the Ariane 5 rocket with a payload of 4 Galileo satellites lifting off from ESA's European Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana. Photo by S. Martin/ESA/CNES/ARIANESPACE/ AFP

Europe's own satnav, Galileo, due to go live

Dec 13, 2016 - 12:00 PM

Galileo promises to outperform US and Russian rivals while boosting European regional self reliance

Liftoff of Ariane flight VA233, carrying four Galileo satellites, from Europe's Spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana, on 17 November 2016. ESA/Stephane Corvaja

Computer glitch blamed for European Mars lander crash

Nov 24, 2016 - 1:30 PM

Schiaparelli was on a test run for a future rover meant to seek out evidence of life past or present but it fell silent seconds before its scheduled touchdown on October 19

Schiaparelli parachute moves in the wind: A comparison of the 25 October image taken by NASA’s Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter HiRISE camera with that taken on 1 November. NASA/JPL-Caltech/University of Arizona

European craft crashed on Mars, possibly exploded – ESA

Oct 22, 2016 - 9:00 AM

The Schiaparelli lander reached the Martian surface a lot faster than intended and got smashed according to the European Space Agency

This handout picture released on October 21, 2016, by the European Space Agency shows the landing site of the Schiaparelli module within the predicted landing ellipse in a mosaic of images (up) and a pair of before-and-after images (down) from the Context Camera (CTX) on NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and the Thermal Emission Imaging System (THEMIS) on NASA's 2001 Mars Odyssey orbiter. A tiny European craft despatched to Mars for a trial touchdown on October 21, 2016, "crashed" into pieces on the Red Planet's surface instead, a European Space Agency mission manager told AFP on Friday. A NASA photograph of the intended landing site confirmed the Schiaparelli craft, missing for two days, had "crashed on the surface of Mars", Thierry Blancquaert said by telephone from mission control in Darmstadt, Germany. The craft "reached the Martian surface a lot faster than intended," he said. / AFP PHOTO / EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY / HO

Where's the Mars lander? Scientists anxiously wait for news

Oct 20, 2016 - 8:08 AM

Ground controllers wait anxiously for news on the status of a tiny European craft which touched down on Mars as part of a daring quest for life on the Red Planet but may not have survived the impact

Artist's impression visualizing the separation of the ExoMars entry, descent and landing demonstrator module, Schiaparelli, from the Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO). ESA/ATG medialab

Europe's Mars lander on track towards red planet

Oct 17, 2016 - 10:27 AM

Europe sends a tiny lander on a 3 day million kilometer 621 000 mile trek to the Martian surface to test drive technology for a daring mission to scout the Red Planet for evidence of life

ExoMars 2016 approaching Mars. ESA/ATG medialab

European lander starts 3-day descent to Mars surface – ESA

Oct 17, 2016 - 12:00 AM

Schiaparelli s main goal is to test entry and landing gear and technology for a subsequent rover which will be the highlight of the ExoMars mission

(FILES) This file photo handout photo taken from the European Space Agency website on March 1, 2016 shows an artist's impression depicting the separation of the ExoMars 2016 entry, descent and landing demonstrator module, named Schiaparelli, from the Trace Gas Orbiter, and heading for Mars. On October 19, 2016, the Schiaparelli capsule, also known as the Entry, Descent and Landing Demonstrator Module (EDM), is scheduled to make the first landing on Mars by an ESA spacecraft. / AFP PHOTO / EUROPEAN SPACE AGENCY / D. Ducros

Rosetta spacecraft set for comet crash

Sep 30, 2016 - 10:15 AM

Mission scientists expect it will bounce and tumble about before settling – but the craft s exact fate will never be known as it was instructed to switch off on impact

DRAMATIC END. This handout file photo released by the European Space Agency (ESA) on December 3, 2012 shows an artist's impression of the Rosetta orbiter at comet 67P/Churyumov–Gerasimenko. Handout photo by C.CARREAU/ESA/AFP

End of a space odyssey: Rosetta orbiter set to land on comet

Sep 28, 2016 - 9:00 PM

Europe s trailblazing deep space comet exploration for clues to the origins of the Solar System ends with the Rosetta orbiter joining robot lab Philae on the iceball s dusty surface for eternit

Brexit will change UK role in Europe's space programs – ESA

Sep 15, 2016 - 4:09 PM

The ESA is autonomous from the European Union and should not be directly affected by Brexit an official says

The ESA Pavilion at the Paris Air and Space Show 2015. ESA-CB PROD

Jokowi on Mary Jane, war on drugs, Milky Way | 6PM wRap

Sep 14, 2016 - 7:17 PM

Watch the 6PM wRap with Chay Hofileña

LOOK: 3-D map of the Milky Way unveiled

Sep 14, 2016 - 3:13 PM

UPDATED Just over halfway through its 5 year mission Gaia s two telescopes have located a billion stars – only one percent of the Milky Way s estimated stellar population

Image courtesy ESA/Gaia/DPAC

Duterte-Obama meeting, PNP app, Philae lander | 12PM wRap

Sep 06, 2016 - 12:23 PM

Watch Rappler’s 12PM newscast with Maria Ressa

Missing comet lander Philae spotted at last – ESA

Sep 06, 2016 - 12:11 AM

The agency releases a photo of the washing machine sized robot lab on the comet s rough surface one of its three legs thrust dramatically into the air

PHILAE. The Philae lander has been found. Photos from European Space Agency Twitter.

Rosetta, Philae to reunite on comet for Sept 30 mission end

Jul 01, 2016 - 11:20 AM

The data from Rosetta and Philae will continue to be analyzed for months and years to come

epa04487728 A handout picture released by the European Space Agency (ESA) on 13 November 2014 shows the panoramic view created from the first two CIVA images, confirming that Rosetta's lander Philae is safely on the surface of Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. One of the lander's three feet can be seen in the foreground. The 100-kilogram probe touched down on Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko, seven hours after separating from its mothership Rosetta half a billion kilometres from Earth. Philae's task is to collect images and samples from the dusty iceball, which will give clues about the origins of the solar system. EPA/ESA HANDOUT HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY

Delayed ExoMars mission gets 77-M euro boost

Jun 17, 2016 - 1:15 PM

The next stage of the mission will see the launch of a European rover capable of drilling up to two meters into the Martian surface in search of organic matter

EXOMARS. The double ExoMars mission will complement the work of NASA's Curiosity rover, which has been criss-crossing Mars' surface for more than 3 years. Photo courtesy of the European Space Agency

Europe's comet orbiter back after 'dramatic' silence

Jun 02, 2016 - 7:30 PM

UPDATED The Rosetta spacecraft returns to normal operations after the European Space Agency lost contact with it for nearly 24 hours over the weekend

epa04799978 (FILE) A file picture released on 02 March 2004 shows a computer generated image of space probe Rosetta (R) during the approach to the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko. The European space probe Rosetta was successfully launched on a mission to the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko from Kourou space centre in French-Guayana earlier today. Rosetta is expected to arrive at Churyumov-Gerasimenko in ten years time where it will release the landing robot Philae (L) on the surface of the comet. The comet lander Philae has awakened from seven months of hibernation and sent signals back to Earth, the European Space Agency said on 14 June 2015. Rosetta, a space probe, has studied the 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko comet for 312 days. It's Philae probe landed on the comet in November 2014 but shut down after some 60 hours as a result of insufficient charge in its batteries due to lack of sunlight at its location. Philae, a device approximately the size of a washing machine, was the first man-made device to make a controlled landing on a comet. EPA/ESA

Europe launches fresh satellite pair for sat-nav system

May 24, 2016 - 11:31 PM

The Galileo sat nav system should be able to provide a more precise signal than the US Global Positioning System GPS according to its developers

epa05326671 A handout image issued by CNES on early 24 May 2016 showing the lift-off of Soyuz flight 15 carrying the 13th and 14th satellites of European satellite navigation system Galileo, at CNES space port in Kourou, Guyana. Galileo will be used for maritime, rail, air, land, relief and rescue operations, agriculture or oil exploration. Galileo will guarantee Europe vis-Ã -vis independence of the United States and Russia, removing the dependence on the American GPS system. The Galileo program consists of a constellation of 24 satellites (+6 spare) placed on three medium circular orbits (MEO) at an altitude of 23222 km from Earth. The launch of two new satellites in the night from 24 to 25 May, Galileo will bring to 14 the number of satellites in the constellation. The European navigation system will cross one more step towards the dissemination of the first services to users with the orbiting of the 13th and 14th satellites. An 8th launch of another pair of satellites is expected at the end of 2016. EPA/ESA-CNES-ARIANESPACE / P. PIRON / HANDOUT HANDOUT EDITORIAL USE ONLY/NO SALES

Phase 2 of ExoMars mission delayed to 2020

May 02, 2016 - 8:45 PM

Space agency officials had warned that the follow on ExoMars mission originally scheduled for launch in 2018 might be delayed due to technical problems and cost overruns

MARS MISSION. The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter Core Module is pictured in the cleanroom of aerospace company OHB in Bremen, Germany, 03 February 2014. The module was handed over to representatives of a French company, which will complete the trace gas orbiter. The module is part of the Mars mission Exomars currently under development by the European Space Agency (ESA) and th eRussian Federal Space Agency (Roscosmos). Photo by Carmen Jaspersen/EPA

Leaked Comelec data, Balikatan exercises, ExoMars | 12PM wRap

Apr 15, 2016 - 12:00 PM

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Mars probe sends first pictures home

Apr 14, 2016 - 11:28 PM

The probe s high resolution camera is switched on for the first time on April 7 taking its first grainy black and white snapshots of space

EXOMARS. The first image taken by the Trace Gas Orbiter of the ESA–Roscosmos ExoMars 2016 mission. Image from ESA/RosCosmos/CaSSIS

Rocket blasts off on mission seeking life on Mars

Mar 14, 2016 - 7:41 PM

Is there life on the Red Planet? The main objective of ExoMars 2016 is to analyze methane there – a possible indicator of life

A Russian Proton-M rocket carrying the ExoMars 2016 spacecraft blasts off from the launch pad at the Russian-leased Baikonur cosmodrome on March 14, 2016. AFP PHOTO / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV / AFP / KIRILL KUDRYAVTSEV

Europe, Russia embark on search for life on Mars

Mar 12, 2016 - 10:32 PM

ExoMars 2016 the first of a two phase Mars exploration aims to photograph the Red Planet and analyze its air for evidence that life once existed there or may do so still

EXOMARS 2016. A handout picture taken and released by the European Space Agency (ESA) on March 11, 2016, shows the Russian Proton rocket, that will launch on March 14 the ExoMars 2016 spacecraft to Mars, standing on its pad of the launch complex at the Baikonour spaceport, Kazakhstan. Stephane Corvaja/ESA/AFP

Europe, Russia embark on search for life on Mars

Mar 12, 2016 - 2:30 PM

With its suite of high tech instruments the Trace Gas Orbiter or TGO should arrive at the Red Planet on October 19 after a journey of 496 million kilometers

RED PLANET. This computer-generated image depicts part of Mars at the boundary between darkness and daylight, with an area including Gale Crater, beginning to catch morning light. NASA/JPL-Caltech

Russia plans return to Mars, Moon despite money woes

Feb 19, 2016 - 12:25 PM

Next month a Russian Proton rocket is scheduled to launch the first of two missions under ExoMars a joint venture with the ESA to snoop out possible life past or present to the red planet

SPACE EXPLORATION. Under an ambitious plan with the European Space Agency, scientists have new hope of again sending missions to the Moon and to Mars. File photo from NASA

Philae comet probe: World prepares for final farewell

Feb 03, 2016 - 11:43 AM

The success of the campaign to humanize a scientific instrument has left the European Space Agency ESA with a dilemma: how to communicate Philae s demise?

WAKE UP, PHILAE! A cartoon showing Rosetta's lander Philae waking up from hibernation, released June 2015. Courtesy European Space Agency

Space probe set to test Einstein's relativity theory

Dec 03, 2015 - 9:43 PM

The probe aims at observing gravitational ripples in space – something predicted by Einstein in 1915

EINSTEIN. The statue of scientist Albert Einstein is seen September 20, 2012 in Washington, DC. Photo by Karen Bleier/AFP

One big step for man as astronaut controls robot from space

Sep 08, 2015 - 7:54 PM

Danish astronaut Andreas Mogensen performs an experiment using a earth based rover controlling it from Space through the help of technology

INTERACT CENTAUR. The Interact Centaur Rover, designed and manufactured by the ESA Telerobotics & Haptics Lab, approaching a task board to demonstrate a mechanical assembly task though teleoperation from space to ground, on 28 August 2015.

Soyuz rocket with 3 astronauts blasts off for ISS

Sep 02, 2015 - 6:13 PM

The take off also marks the 500th launch from the Gagarin launchpad in Kazakhstan named after the Soviet space pioneer

LIFTOFF. The Soyuz TMA-18M during liftoff from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan on September 2, 2015. NASA TV

Rosetta hits 'milestone' in comet's run past Sun

Aug 14, 2015 - 10:04 AM

The samples as well as images Rosetta takes of the comet as it comes within 186 million kilometers 116 million miles of the Sun will be analyzed in the coming weeks and months the European Space Agency says

HELLO, COMET! Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko by Rosetta’s OSIRIS narrow-angle camera on 3 August from a distance of 285 km. ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

Comet 67P, robot lab Philae's alien host, nears Sun

Aug 10, 2015 - 11:19 AM

Scientists hope the heat of perihelion – when the comet comes closest to the Sun in its orbit – will cause the enigmatic traveller to shed more of its icy crust

This image from Rosetta’s OSIRIS narrow-angle camera is marked to show the location of the first touchdown point of the Philae lander. ESA/Rosetta/MPS

Philae lander finds organic molecules on comet

Jul 31, 2015 - 11:13 AM

Philae finds several organic molecules including 4 never detected before on a comet which are important building blocks of life

Still image from animation of Philae separating from Rosetta and descending to the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in November 2014. ESA/ATG medialab

Comet probe Philae dials home, 'doing very well'

Jun 20, 2015 - 2:01 PM

The Philae mission seeks to unlock the long held secrets of comets which may reveal how the Solar System was formed

COMET LANDER. Still image from animation of Philae separating from Rosetta and descending to the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in November 2014. Photo from ESA/ATG medialab

'Hello Earth': Comet probe Philae wakes up

Jun 14, 2015 - 9:12 PM

Scientists: We received new signals from Philae for a period of two minutes as well as 40 seconds worth of data

COMET LANDER. Still image from animation of Philae separating from Rosetta and descending to the surface of comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko in November 2014. ESA/ATG medialab

Wake up Philae! The world awaits news

Mar 13, 2015 - 10:08 AM

The European Space Agency ESA cautions there could be a long wait before the lander talks to its comet orbiting mothership Rosetta if at all

This image from Rosetta’s OSIRIS narrow-angle camera is marked to show the location of the first touchdown point of the Philae lander. ESA/Rosetta/MPS

Europe launches prototype 'space plane'

Feb 11, 2015 - 11:59 PM

The IXV marks the latest step by Europe in the development of atmospheric reentry technologies a key to manned flights

Rosetta reveals new details about comet

Jan 23, 2015 - 9:44 PM

High definition images taken by the spacecraft show how the nucleus consists of two lobes connected by a neck region which some have described as a rubber ducky shape

HELLO, COMET! Comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko by Rosetta’s OSIRIS narrow-angle camera on 3 August from a distance of 285 km. The image resolution is 5.3 metres/pixel. ESA/Rosetta/MPS for OSIRIS Team MPS/UPD/LAM/IAA/SSO/INTA/UPM/DASP/IDA

Comet probe 'may revive in March' – French space chief

Jan 06, 2015 - 8:29 AM

Jean Yves Le Gall: We hope that from March the sunlight will help the robot to recharge its batteries and resume its scientific work

This image from Rosetta’s OSIRIS narrow-angle camera is marked to show the location of the first touchdown point of the Philae lander. ESA/Rosetta/MPS

German named next head of European Space Agency

Dec 18, 2014 - 8:45 PM

Johann Dietrich Woerner takes over the reins from Frenchman Jean Jacques Dordain

SPACE LEADERS. Chairman of the German Aerospace Center (DLR) Johann-Dietrich Woerner (L) and the director general of the European Space Agency (ESA) Jean-Jacque Dordain (R) stand next to a satellite's scale model during an event to mark the 50th anniversary of European space flight in the ESA Satellite Control Center in Darmstadt, Germany, 28 August 2014. Several European countries started a collaboration on space travel 50 years ago. EPA/ARNE DEDERT