Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars

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Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars
Operator European Space Agency
Manufacturer Russian Space Research Institute
Instrument type near infrared spectrometer
Function surface composition
Mission duration ≥ 7 months[1]
Mass 1.74 kg
Dimensions 16 × 8 × 9.6 cm
Spectral band near infrared (NIR)
Data rate 100 kbits per measurement
Host Spacecraft
Spacecraft ExoMars rover
Operator European Space Agency
Launch date July 2020[2]
Rocket Proton rocket
COSPAR ID {{#property:P247}}

Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars (ISEM) is an infrared spectrometer for remote sensing that is part of the science payload on board the European Space Agency's ExoMars rover, tasked to search for biosignatures and biomarkers on Mars. The rover is planned for launch in July 2020 and land on Mars in March 2021.

ISEM will provide context assessment of the surface mineralogy in the vicinity of the ExoMars rover for selection of potential astrobiological targets. The Principal Investigator is Oleg Korablev from the Russian Space Research Institute (IKI).

Overview[edit | hide all | hide | edit source]

ISEM Performance/units[3][4]
Type Infrared spectrometer
Field of view 1.3°
Spectral range near infrared: 1.15 - 3.30 μm
Spectral resolution from: 3.3 nm at 1.15 μm
to: 28 nm at 3.30 μm
Filter acousto-optic tunable filter (AOTF)
Detector cooler Peltier cooler
RF power 5 W
RF range 23–82 MHz
Detector InAs photodiode[4]
Data volume 100 kbits per measurement
Max power
14 W
(optical module)
16.0 cm × 8.0 cm × 9.6 cm
Mass 1.74 kg

The Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars (ISEM) is being developed by the Russian Space Research Institute (IKI).[5][6] It will be the first instance of near-infrared spectroscopy (NIR) observations done from the Mars surface.[3] The instrument will be installed on the ExoMars rover's mast to measure reflected solar radiation in the near infrared range for context assessment of the surface mineralogy in the vicinity of the ExoMars rover for selection of potential astrobiological targets.[3][7] As the number of samples obtained with the drill will be limited, the selection of high-value sites for drilling will be crucial. Working with PanCam (a high-resolution panoramic camera), ISEM will aid in the selection of potential targets, especially water-bearing minerals, for close-up investigations and drilling sites.[3]

ISEM could detect, if present, organic compounds, including evolving trace gases such as hydrocarbons like methane in the Martian atmosphere.[3]

Objectives[edit | hide | edit source]

The stated science objectives of ISEM are: [4]

  • Geological investigation and study a composition of Martian soils in the uppermost few millimeters of the surface.
  • Characterisation of the composition of surface materials, discriminating between various classes of silicates, oxides, hydrated minerals and carbonates.
  • Identification and mapping of the distribution of aqueous alteration products on Mars.
  • Real-­‐time assessment of surface composition in selected areas, in support of identifying and selection of the most promising drilling sites.
  • Studies of variations of the atmospheric dust properties and of the atmospheric gaseous composition.

Development[edit | hide | edit source]

ISEM is a derivative of the Lunar Infrared Spectrometer (LIS) being developed by the Russian Space Research Institute (IKI) in Moscow for the planned Luna-25 and Luna-27 Russian landers.[3] Collaborating institutions include: Moscow State University, Main Astrophysical Observatory, National Academy of Sciences of Ukraine, the National Research Institute for Physicotechnical and Radio Engineering Measurements (VNIIFTRI) in Russia, Moscow State University, and the Aberystwyth University in United Kingdom. The science team includes researchers from Russia, France, Italy, Sweden, Germany, the United Kingdom, and Canada.[3]

The instrument has been designed to specifically detect carbonates, oxalates, borates, nitrates, NH4-bearing minerals, that are good indicators of past habitable conditions such as aqueous minerals. It is also designed to detect organic compounds, including polycyclic aromatic hydrocarbons (PAHs) and those containing aliphatic C-H molecules.[3] In addition, ISEM can also detect seasonal frost, if present at the landing site, and it can be used to analse the bore hole excavated by the ExoMars drill, if the rover backs away some distance.[3]

See also[edit | hide | edit source]

References[edit | hide | edit source]

  1. Vago, Jorge L.; et al. (July 2017). "Habitability on Early Mars and the Search for Biosignatures with the ExoMars Rover". Astrobiology. 17 (6-7): 471–510. Bibcode:2017AsBio..17..471V. doi:10.1089/ast.2016.1533. 
  2. "Second ExoMars mission moves to next launch opportunity in 2020" (Press release). European Space Agency. 2 May 2016. Retrieved 2 May 2016. 
  3. 3.0 3.1 3.2 3.3 3.4 3.5 3.6 3.7 3.8 Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars: A Mast-Mounted Instrument for the Rover. (PDF). Oleg I. Korablev, Yurii Dobrolensky, Nadezhda Evdokimova, Anna A. Fedorova, Ruslan O. Kuzmin, Sergei N. Mantsevich, Edward A. Cloutis, John Carter, Francois Poulet, Jessica Flahaut, Andrew Griffiths, Matthew Gunn, Nicole Schmitz, Javier Martin-Torres, Maria-Paz Zorzano, Daniil S. Rodionov, Jorge L. Vago, Alexander V. Stepanov, Andrei Yu. Titov, Nikita A. Vyazovetsky, Alexander Yu. Trokhimovskiy, Alexander G. Sapgir, Yurii K. Kalinnikov, Yurii S. Ivanov, Alexei A. Shapkin, and Andrei Yu. Ivanov. Astrobiology, Volume 17, Number 6 and 7, 2017. doi:10.1089/ast.2016.1543
  4. 4.0 4.1 4.2 ISEM (Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars) - Overview (PDF). Russian Space Research Institute (IKI).
  5. "Inside ExoMars". European Space Agency. August 2012. Retrieved 4 August 2012. 
  6. "ExoMars 2018 mission". Институт Космических Исследований Space Research Institute. Retrieved 15 March 2016. 
  7. ExoMars: Searching for Life on Mars. Elizabeth Howell, March 15, 2017.

This article uses material from Infrared Spectrometer for ExoMars on Wikipedia (view authors). License under CC BY-SA 3.0. Wikipedia logo
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