ESA seeks pricing for Mars rover
Time for sums to be done on fag packets
The European Space Agency (ESA) has asked Thales Alenia Space, the lead industrial partner on the ExoMars project, to put together a cost proposal for building a Mars Rover, according to reports.
The agency says it wants to hear from the group in just 10 weeks time.
The basic details of the design were hammered out by agency delegates at a meeting in June. Now ESA wants to know how much it would cost to build a 200kg rover capable of trundling over the Martian surface with a 16kg instrument package, searching for signs of life. It might also have to carry an additional 30kg science package that could study the local geology and environment.
Vincenzo Giorgio at Thales Alenia Space told the BBC that it would be a challenge to meet such a tight deadline.
"We now have a deadline of 8 October for delivery of the full committing proposal from industry. This is a challenge not only because there is August - normally a holiday all over Europe - but also because two months is a major challenge anyway to make a full blown proposal."
The group said it will meet with its contractors in Turin next week to kick start the work, while ESA plans to reconvene its delegates to discuss the proposal in November this year. ®
Why bother with a quote?
Just send up a surplus rocket with a beer can on the end. That'll save everyone a lot of money on a project with limited outcomes:
a) crash on impact (see Before and After above)
b) burn up in atmosphere of Earth or Mars
c) completely miss Mars and be returned to Earth in 21,000 by angry Greenpeace style aliens.
Before and After?
Based upon reliable information provided by the Beagle 2 mission.....
Before the landing: £100M
After the landing: £1 (scrap metal - buyer collects)
Mars Rover - Why Re-invent The Wheel?
Don't NASA have a spare one they can buy? Theirs are obviously quite good!