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Sticks
2008-Dec-18, 07:51 AM
From the BBC website (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7788638.stm)



Britain's ill-fated Mars probe, Beagle 2, may have met a fiery end through a miscalculation, New Scientist reports.

The spacecraft, built to find signs of life, vanished on Christmas Day 2003.

A simulation by Queensland University scientists suggests the probe went out of control during its descent due to a misjudgement of the Martian atmosphere.


more... (http://news.bbc.co.uk/1/hi/sci/tech/7788638.stm)

Nowhere Man
2008-Dec-18, 11:29 PM
Professor Pillinger is now working on the European Space Agency's Rosetta mission.

The robotic spacecraft, launched in 2004, is intended to study the comet 67P/Churyumov-Gerasimenko.

"If this one goes pear-shaped, I shall not be best pleased," he said.:D

Fred

slang
2008-Dec-18, 11:36 PM
"If this one goes pear-shaped, I shall not be best pleased," he said.

That's the exact same thing I intended to reply about earlier. It was a shame that Beagle2 got lost, but man, those press conferences with Prof Pillinger were always a joy to watch. Both before and after landing/mars surface interface.

JonClarke
2008-Dec-19, 12:32 AM
This work was briefly mentioned at the Australian Mars Exploration Conference held at the University of SA in July this year. The public lecture was given by Russell Boyce, who holds the DSTO chair in hypersonics at UQ. They were using free floating models of Beagle in the shock tuinnel and imaging the airflow round it. Fascinating stuff.