GMRT intercepts radio signals from Europe’s mission to Mars

October 19, 2016 7:33 pm
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The Giant Metrewave Radio Telescope (GMRT) situated in Khodad about 60 kilometres from Pune, detected the radio signals (around 401 MHz) which were emitted by European Space Agency (ESA) probe at the time of the lander’s separation from the orbiter, as it closed in on Mars after a sixmonth journey. On Wednesday today, around 8.30pm IST, the probelander will detach itself from the spacecraft and land on the surface of Mars. This is a very crucial time when the lander will go through Mars’s atmosphere.A radio frequency transmitter will transmit waves and these waves will be the only means to find out the health of the lander. Somak RayChaudhury , director, InterUniversity Centre for Astronomy and Astrophysics, said, “This is an exciting development in the history of one of the few truly international scientific facilities we have in India. We are all eagerly following the mission, and GMRT’s role in it, as the story unfolds”.

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