September 28, 2022

A Successful One-Way “Blind” Phone Call at Mars

To get these insights to Earth, they initially transfer the data as much as spacecraft in orbit around Mars. These orbiters then utilize their much bigger, more powerful transmitters to relay the information across area to Earth.
Mars Express raised off from Baikonur Cosmodrome aboard a Soyuz– Fregat rocket on June 2, 2003. It got in orbit around Mars on December 25 that year and reached its operational orbit in January 2004.
” Normally, an orbiter like ESAs Mars Express initially sends out down a hail signal to a rover as a hi,” says James Godfrey, Mars Express Spacecraft Operations Manager.
” The rover then sends out back an action to establish stable communications and start the two-way exchange of information. This relies on the rovers radio system being suitable with the orbiters.”.
As Mars Express transmits its hello signal using interaction frequencies that are different from those the Chinese Zhurong Mars rover gets, two-way interaction is not possible.
However in the other direction, Zhurong can send a signal utilizing a frequency that Mars Express can receive.
The relay radio on Mars Express has a mode that permits this one-way interaction– interaction in the blind where the sender cant make certain if their signal is being gotten– however until now, the method hadnt been checked on the spacecraft.
ESA Mars Express passes on information from CNSA Zhurong rover. Credit: ESA.
In November, ESAs Mars Express and CNSAs Zhurong teams brought out a series of speculative interaction tests in which Mars Express utilized this in the blind mode to listen for signals sent to it by the Zhurong Rover.
The experiments culminated in an effective test on 20 November.
” Mars Express effectively received the signals sent by the rover, and our coworkers in the Zhurong team confirmed that all the data got here on Earth in really great quality,” states ESAs Gerhard Billig.
” Were looking forward to carrying out more tests in the future to continue to experiment and further enhance this technique of communicating between space missions.”.
The information passed on by Mars Express arrived on Earth at ESAs ESOC area operations center in Darmstadt, Germany, by means of deep-space interaction antennas. From there, these data were forwarded to the Zhurong group at the Beijing Aerospace Flight Control Center, who verified the success of the test.

Mars Express passes on information from Zhurong. Credit: ESA
This November, ESAs Mars Express spacecraft carried out a series of speculative communication tests with the Chinese (CNSA) Zhurong Mars rover. Mars Express effectively caught information sent out up in the blind by the rover and communicated them to Earth where they were forwarded to the Zhurong team in China.
13:07 CET, November 7, Utopia Planitia. The Zhurong rover, commanded by the Tianwen-1 orbiter, points its radio up at the Martian sky. Any minute now, ESAs Mars Express will begin to pass overhead. Zhurong starts transmitting a signal up into area. It has no other way of understanding if its message is being gotten.
Landers and rovers on Mars collect information that assist researchers answer essential questions about the geology, environment, surface environment, history of water, and capacity for life on the Red Planet.

The Zhurong rover, commanded by the Tianwen-1 orbiter, points its radio up at the Martian sky. Any minute now, ESAs Mars Express will start to pass overhead. Zhurong starts transmitting a signal up into area. Mars Express raised off from Baikonur Cosmodrome aboard a Soyuz– Fregat rocket on June 2, 2003. It got in orbit around Mars on December 25 that year and reached its functional orbit in January 2004.

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