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Terma unit involved in mission critical descent on Mars


The Remote Terminal and Power Unit plays a key role during the final phase of the ExoMars descent onto the red planet on 19 October 2016.

The Terma designed Remote Terminal and Power Unit plays a key role during the final phase of the ExoMars Entry, Descent and Landing Demonstrator Module – Schiaparelli – on Wednesday, 19 October 2016. 

The Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO) with the lander Schiaparelli (image appears courtesy of ESA)

On Sunday, 16 October late afternoon CEST, the two ExoMars satellites Trace Gas Orbiter and the ExoMars Entry, Descent and Landing Demonstrator Module, Schiaparelli, will separate as the first crucial maneuver that initiates Schiaparelli’s descent onto the red planet Mars.

After the separation, the lander is sent on a three-day long journey that culminates on Wednesday with an expected landing time at 16:48 CEST.

Terma has developed and delivered mission-critical equipment for the landing module, a Remote Terminal and Power Unit – RTPU, which is a combined power supply and sensor package which will implement measurements during the landing process.

The RTPU plays a key role during the landing, as it controls the mechanisms that perform the landing process and collects data about the landing process. It delivers power, implements measurements, and it assists in the release of the heat shield and parachute as well as controls the small rocket engines used during the last part of the landing.

Terma also supplied the Mission Control System, which monitors and controls the mission as well as the simulator for the preparation of procedures and testing of a number of systems before launch.

The 2016 mission is a preparation for future missions, among others the ExoMars 2020 mission in which Europe will land a vehicle on Mars.

ESA’s time schedule for the coming days’ events

For general information on ExoMars.

Visit Terma's campaign site about ExoMars.

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Kasper Rasmussen
Director, Communications
T: +45 8743 6091
E: kar@terma.com