VU Space Day

Future of Space


Håkan Svedhem

Since 2014 I am the Project Scientist of the 2016 ExoMars mission, which includes the Trace Gas Orbiter, TGO, and the Entry, descent and landing Demonstrator Model, EDM (Schiaparelli). Before this, I was the project Scientist for the Venus Express mission from the start of the development in 2001 to the end of mission in 2015. My main research interests include atmospheres of the terrestrial planets, planetary evolution, interplanetary dust, and space instrumentation. In parallel to my ESA appointment, since 2016 I am the General Secretary of the European Geosciences Union, EGU.

I will talk about the ESA/Roscosmos ExoMars programme, which has as its over-all objective to search for signs of past or present of life on Mars and wherever possible to characterise these. I will focus on
the TGO, its instruments and its first results. To put things in perspective I will also give some examples
of results from our old but still working spacecraft Mars Express. I will also describe the very complex
ExoMars Rover and Surface Platform and their highly advanced sets of instruments, and discuss the
recently selected 2020 landing site Oxia Planum together with some of the scientific and technical
justifications for selecting this site.