image 25-March-2019 20:55:10

Payload deck of the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter

Date: 12 March 2015
Satellite: ExoMars 2016
Location: Thales Alenia Space, Cannes, France
Copyright: ESA – B. Bethge

A view from beneath the payload deck of the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter (TGO). The spacecraft is in the cleanroom at Thales Alenia Space (France) in Cannes, prior to the mating of the protoflight model (PFM) of Schiaparelli, also known as the Entry, Descent and Landing Demonstrator Module (EDM). Schiaparelli will be installed above the payload deck. Once it is mated to the TGO, the resulting 'SpaceCraft Composite' (SCC) will be installed on a shaker for sine vibration testing at verification levels. These tests are carried out to check workmanship and to demonstrate that the SCC can withstand the range of vibrations that it will encounter during launch.

The silver-coloured package beneath the payload deck is the flight model of the FREND instrument. This neutron detector will be used to map the presence of hydrogen on the Martian surface, targeting deposits of near-surface water ice.

Last Update: 07 April 2015

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