Airbus: Heavy load
The European Space Agency has contracted with the giant aerospace company Airbus to design and build a spacecraft to bring the first Mars samples to Earth.
The aim is to bring the samples that the “Presence” spacecraft will collect to search for the possibility of an ancient life on the Red Planet.
The cost of the ambitious project is billions of dollars. “The difficulty here is not only the weakness of the difficulty of traditional Mars missions, but it is twice as much, given the complexity of the process,” David Parker, director of the Department of Human and Robotic Exploration at the European Space Agency, told the BBC.
Adding «And that vehicle that Airbus will build is the name of it: the first inter-planetary cargo ship because this is what it really does, it is designed to transport the payloads between Mars and Earth.»
DHL between the two planets
It was called the “Orbiter Return to Earth,” and will weigh 6.5 tons when launched in 2026 with ion engines that rely on huge solar panels, able to propel it back and forth; Bringing Martian rocks will require the cooperation of a group of robots of both NASA and ESA.
Initially, another NASA landing craft will carry a “European” space cart “, to pick up the Presence sample tubes, and then place them in the landing craft; As a result, a small missile called the Martian Boarding Vehicle climbs to the orbit of Mars.
Once the samples settle into orbit, they will be met by the “Orbital Spacecraft” and taken to be transported to Earth in a football-like container, and they will then descend over the Utah Desert in 2031 if everything goes as well.
The European Space Agency has officially hired aerospace giant Airbus to build a spacecraft designed to bring back the first-ever rock samples from Mars. BBC Report