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Thursday, November 24, 2011


The ESA Establishes Contact with Phobos Grunt (? 2011 WQ4)

The ESA reports that it has made contact with the errant Mars probe Phobos Grunt, (which failed to leave its parking orbit) this is also confirmed by the Russian Space Research Institute (see also here). Telemetry has been limited, but the transmitter was switched on and communication established. Apparently there is a normal power supply and communications are functioning properly.

It is too late to send Phobos Grunt to Mars, that launch window has closed, but it may be possible to send it to a nearby Phobos sized asteroid.

Still, to be confirmed, Peter Lake passes on the news that Near Earth Object 2011 WQ4 may be Phobos Grunt. Nah, false alarm.

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