Posted: Fri 1st Nov 2019

Airbus Broughton: ExoMars Rover ‘Bridget’ was out of this world

News and Info from Deeside, Flintshire, North Wales
This article is old - Published: Friday, Nov 1st, 2019

The children of Airbus employees were treated to a space-themed spectacle when they joined their parents for ‘Bring Your Child to Work’ day this week. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The Broughton Plant’s Innovation Space played host to a replica ExoMars Rover, a scale-model of Airbus’ record-breaking, unmanned, solar-powered Zephyr aircraft, and a pop-up planetarium to wow staff and guests alike. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

There were also drone and 3D-printing demonstrations to enjoy. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Emily Merrison, Airbus’ Head of Education Liaison, said: “The ‘Bring Your Child to Work’ days are part of Airbus’ education outreach activities that we run at both our Broughton and Filton sites each year. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

“About 30 children of employees were given a tour of the Broughton facilities, completed some fun engineering challenges, and got to meet ‘Bridget’, the replica ExoMars Rover. Hopefully, the experience will have inspired a few more young people to consider future careers in engineering.” ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​


The European Space Agency’s  ExoMars Rover mission will pioneer new ways to explore the surface of Mars and carry out advanced science, looking for evidence of past or present life. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The 2020 mission of the ExoMars programme will deliver a European rover and a Russian surface platform to the surface of Mars. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

A Proton rocket will be used to launch the mission, which will arrive to Mars after a nine-month journey. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The ExoMars rover will travel across the Martian surface to search for signs of life. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

It will collect samples with a drill and analyse them with next-generation instruments. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

ExoMars will be the first mission to combine the capability to move across the surface and to study Mars at depth. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

The success of the scientific experiments depends on the six-wheeled rover vehicle which is designed and built by Airbus in Stevenage, UK. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

A series of prototype rovers has been used since 2007 to thoroughly evaluate the design of the locomotion and navigation systems and to perfect improvements. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​

Each prototype is given a nickname by the development team. First there was Bridget then Bruno and the latest is Bryan. ‌​‌‌‌​‌‌‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​‍‌​‌‌‌​‌​


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