Announcement of Opportunity for European payload elements on the Surface Platform of the ExoMars 2018 mission
31 March 2015The European Space Agency (ESA) and the Space Research Institute of the Russian Academy of Sciences (IKI) invite the scientific community to submit proposals for instrument(s) and instrument contributions in the ExoMars 2018 Surface Platform. This Announcement of Opportunity is open to scientists in ESA Member States, Canada, and Russia.
Direct link to this Announcement page:
The ExoMars 2018 mission will land a Rover and a Surface Platform on the surface of Mars. The Rover will be equipped with a suite of instruments, including a 2-m drill for subsurface sampling and a Sample Preparation and Distribution System. These will support the suite of geology and life seeking experiments in the Rover’s Analytical Laboratory Drawer. After the Rover will have egressed, the ExoMars Surface Platform, which will contain a further suite of instruments, will begin its science mission to study the environmental and geophysical nature of the landing site.
Roscosmos/IKI, who are responsible for the Surface Platform, have identified a preliminary list of Russian instruments, some of which foresee European elements to be completed. The model payload includes an allocation for European-led instrument(s).
This Announcement of Opportunity requests proposals for:
- European contributions to Russian-led instruments on the Surface Platform;
- European-led instrument(s) (or integrated suite of sensors) on the Surface Platform.
The selection process will seek to identify a payload that can cover as well and as many of the science priorities as possible within the available resource envelope (mass, energy, data return, etc.).
The science priorities for the Surface Platform payload have been established taking into account the long lifetime (target is 1 Earth year) and stationary nature of the Surface Platform scientific measurements. In the Priority 1 category are: context imaging, and long-term climate monitoring and atmospheric investigations. In the Priority 2 category are: studies of subsurface water distribution at the landing site; atmosphere/surface volatile exchange; monitoring of the radiation environment (and comparison with TGO measurements); and geophysical investigations of Mars’ internal structure.
Although this AO is being released through ESA, both agencies will take part in the proposal review process.
AO schedule and deadlines
|Date of AO release
|31 March 2015
|Due date for mandatory Letters of Intent
|15 April 2015 (12:00 CEST - noon)
|Due date for Proposals
|2 June 2015 (12:00 CEST - noon)
|Announcement of Selected Proposals
AO documentation package
The documentation package for this AO consists of the following documents:
- Invitation from the Director of Science and Robotic Exploration (pdf)
- Announcement of Opportunity for European payload elements on the Surface Platform of the ExoMars 2018 mission (pdf)
- ExoMars Science Management Plan, Version 6, 31 January 2014 (pdf)
- ExoMars Surface Platform Letter of Intent Template (doc)
- ExoMars Surface Platform Proposal Template (doc)
- ExoMars Surface Platform E-PIP (pdf)
These documents can be downloaded as a zipped package from the right-hand menu.
Letter of Intent (LOI) submission
Prospective proposers are required to submit by 15 April 2015 at 12:00 CEST, a Letter of Intent (LOI) stating their intention to submit a proposal in response to the present Announcement. Submission of a LOI is mandatory; proposals not preceded by a corresponding LOI will not be considered.
LOI submissions are accepted exclusively in electronic form, in PDF format, using the online submission form that can be accessed below or from the right-hand menu (the form opens in a new window). The LOI must be prepared using the ExoMars Surface Platform Letter of Intent Template.
LOI submission form
The deadline has passed
The deadline for receipt of proposals is 2 June 2015 at 12:00 CEST. Proposals must be prepared using the ExoMars Surface Platform Proposal Template and are accepted exclusively in electronic form, in PDF format, using the online submission form that can be accessed below or from the right-hand menu (the form opens in a new window). A description of the expected proposal content is available in the Announcement document, which is included in the information package of this AO.
Proposal submission form
The deadline has passed
Contact with ESA
Requests for further information and clarification should be addressed to:
Dr. Rolf de Groot - Exploration Programme Coordinator
Dr. Luigi Colangeli – Scientific Programme Coordinator