Latest Concurrent Design Facility Stories

2010-09-09 08:05:00

Any space mission is difficult, docking a pair of spacecraft is tough but flying multiple satellites in formation is the real cutting edge. A new software testbed allows ESA and industrial teams to get to grips with multiple-satellite missions to come, starting with Proba-3. It is hard to overstate the difficulty of formation flying: separate multi-million-euro pieces of hardware, each one moving through space at several kilometers per second come as close as a matter of meters as their...

2010-08-22 09:48:14

A European gravity observation satellite has been hit by a second computer glitch and is not able to transmit its valuable data down to Earth.Europe's Goce satellite, launched on 17 March, 2009, is a satellite carrying a highly sensitive gravity gradiometer which detects fine density differences in the crust and oceans of the Earth. Its main mission is to make the most precise maps yet of how gravity varies across the globe.The satellite suffered a processor fault in February forcing...

2010-07-22 06:00:00

Ideas for Europe's next space mission will come from scientists who will be asked beginning next week to put their minds in gear and come up with a new plan. The European Space Agency will fund the winning proposal to the tune of several hundred million euros/dollars. The winning proposal would be set for a launch date sometime between 2020 to 2022. ESA says the bids must address fundamental, but fairly broad, questions about the Universe and our place within it. "The simplest way to...

2010-06-08 11:50:00

The Berlin Air and Space Show, ILA, one of the world's largest aerospace trade shows, opens next week. Organized every two years by the German Aerospace Industries Association (BDLI), it will be taking place at Berlin-Schönefeld Airport on June 8-13. ESA, the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) and the BDLI have jointly designed a special pavilion, "ËœSpace for Earth', in the International Space Village (Hall 9), in which visitors can learn more about European space programs and...

2010-06-02 09:42:31

Development model of Mars rover at University of Leicester on Friday June 4 A development model of the Mars Rover, called Bridget, is on display at the University Friday, June 4, providing invited schoolchildren as well as staff and students with an exciting glimpse into the shape of things to come. The event coincides with celebrations marking the 50th anniversary of space research at the University of Leicester. Scientists from the University of Leicester are involved in five instruments on...

2010-05-18 11:40:33

A new section in the ESA web site highlights the Agency's growing activity related to the Space Situational Awareness program. The full SSA system will protect Europe's citizens and satellite-based services by detecting space hazards. The Space Situational Awareness Preparatory Programme was authorized at the November 2008 ESA Ministerial Council and formally launched in 2009. More than ever before, satellites provide critical services to European citizens, governments and industry. Any...

2010-03-23 07:40:00

Video gaming has become one of the globe's most popular pastimes. Fans say games are often educational, their detractors answer they are anything but. Might ESA have something to learn from gaming? A new Agency study says the answer is yes. It comes from ESA's Technology Observatory, which is tasked with scanning non-space sectors to look for developments with potential for spin-in or joint research. The study, Online Game Technology for Space Education and System Analysis, looks at potential...

2010-03-12 08:09:26

A crew of six, including two Europeans, will soon begin a simulated mission to Mars in a mockup that includes an interplanetary spaceship, a Mars lander and a martian landscape. The Mars500 experiment, as long as a real journey to Mars, will be second to none as the ultimate test of human endurance. Four ESA-selected Europeans, Belgian Jerome Clevers, Arc'hanmael Gaillard and Romain Charles from France and Colombian-Italian Diego Urbina, started the mission training at the end of February...

2010-03-05 11:48:58

For years, ESA has been bringing space technologies down to Earth through its Technology Transfer Program and Business Incubation initiatives. Now, the Agency will strengthen these initiatives by supporting new businesses using space innovations through a dedicated venture capital fund. The Open Sky Technologies Fund (OSTF) is an early-stage venture capital fund aimed at nurturing the most promising business opportunities arising from space technologies and satellite applications for...

2010-02-19 09:15:16

Dark energy, habitable planets around other stars, and the mysterious nature of our own Sun, have been chosen by ESA as candidates for two medium-class missions to be launched no earlier than 2017. On Thursday February 18, ESA's Science Program Committee (SPC) approved three missions to enter the so-called definition phase. This is the next step required before the final decision is taken as to which missions are implemented. The three proposals chosen to proceed are Euclid, PLAnetary...

Word of the Day
  • In the phrase to out-herod Herod, to be more violent than Herod (as represented in the old mystery plays); hence, to exceed in any excess of evil.
Herod refers to 'Herod the Great,' a Roman client king and 'a madman who murdered his own family and a great many rabbis.' According to the OED, the term is 'chiefly with allusion to Shakespeare's use' in Hamlet.