The European Space Agency has carried out the longest distance live transmission in history. 900 times the distance to the Moon.
For the first time in history, we have been able to follow a live broadcast from Mars, 300 million kilometers awayThanks to the European Space Agency.
It’s all part of the celebrations 20th anniversary of the Mars Express orbiterthe first planetary mission of the European Space Agency (ESA), with Spanish participation.
In 2003, the ESA launched the mission Mars Expressformed by a orbiter (a ship that circles the planet, collecting data), and the rover Beagle-2. The goal was to search for water on Mars.
Unfortunately Beagle-2 made it to land safely, but was rendered inoperative. The orbiter has been sending back valuable data for two decades, extending its mission several times.
To celebrate the 20th anniversary of Mars Expressthe ESA prepared on friday a live broadcast from Marssomething that had never been done before.
The Visual Monitoring Camera (VMC) was capturing images of Mars that he sent to live to the ESA control center on Earth, and the center broadcast them live on streming. You can see it here:
Es the most distant live broadcast in history, 300 million kilometers. Images take a few 16 minutes to reach Earth.
al final, the live feed from Mars showed an image every 50 seconds.
It is important to note that the orbiter Mars Express uses already outdated technology, which was not prepared to broadcast live. ESA has spent 7 months updating its software to be able to carry out this transmission.
The camera used, for example, was designed to follow the landing of the Beagle-2, so the images it shows do not have much definition.
Even so the experiment has been a complete successachieving its goal of transmit live images from Mars for one hour, 300 million kilometers. A good rehearsal for NASA’s most ambitious mission, which is already underway: exploring Jupiter’s Mondays.