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First Tests for Land­ing the Mar­tian Moons eX­plo­ration Rover

1 Oct 2020, 13:13 UTC
First Tests for Land­ing the Mar­tian Moons eX­plo­ration Rover
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Preparations for a drop test. (Credit: DLR)

Intensity of the landing impact on Mars’ moon Phobos is being tested with a rover model.The housing of the rover consists of a lightweight construction made of carbon-fibre-reinforced polymers (CFRP).The landing on Phobos is planned for late 2026 or early 2027 as part of the MMX mission

BREMEN, Germany (DLR PR) — The Japan Aerospace Exploration Agency (JAXA) Martian Moons eXploration (MMX) mission will have a German-French rover on board when it is launched in 2024. The rover will land on the Martian moon Phobos and explore its surface for approximately three months.

Initial landing tests are currently underway at the German Aerospace Center (Deutsches Zentrum für Luft- und Raumfahrt; DLR) Landing and Mobility Test Facility (Lande- und Mobilitätstest Anlage; LAMA) in Bremen. Using a first preliminary development model, the engineers are determining how robust the design of the approximately 25-kilogram rover must be to withstand an impact on the moon’s surface after a free fall of about 40 to 100 metres.

“Under laboratory conditions, we drop the preliminary model of the MMX Rover from a height of five centimetres onto a changeable surface at various angles,” explains Test Manager Michael Lange from ...

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