Status Report

Beagle 2 – No signal received during the first pass of Mars Odyssey

By SpaceRef Editor
December 24, 2003
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Beagle 2 – No signal received during the first pass of Mars Odyssey
Beagle 2

No telemetry from Beagle 2 was received during this morning’s passage of
NASA’s Mars Odyssey over the Isidis Planitia landing site.

Professor Colin Pillinger, lead scientist for the Beagle 2 project,
commented that this certainly does not mean that the probe had been
damaged during its descent. There were a number of possible
explanations, the most likely being that the Beagle 2 antenna was not
pointing in the direction of Mars Odyssey.

The next opportunity to communicate with Beagle 2 will be late this
evening (between 10pm and midnight GMT) when the Jodrell Bank
Observatory will listen out for a signal from the lander.

The Beagle 2 Team

At 2.47am GMT the Beagle 2 probe entered the martian atmosphere to begin
the final descent to the surface, coming to rest at 2.54am.

But it will be several more hours before the waiting scientists and
engineers will get the vital message confirming that all went to plan.

Beagle 2 will wait for the time that NASA’s Odyssey passes overhead and
send a message. This is then relayed back to Earth and the start of the
message – the notes of the music composed by Blur – will tell us all is

The Beagle 2 Team

SpaceRef staff editor.