11.15.2016 Schiaparelli Impact Site on Mars, Stereo
11.03.2016 Schiaparelli Impact Site on Mars, in Color
03.30.2016 Erisa Hines
03.30.2016 Buzz Aldrin
03.21.2016 For a Decade Orbiting Mars: One Recent View
03.09.2016 For a Decade Orbiting Mars: One Recent View
03.09.2016 Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter By the Numbers
03.01.2016 MRO sees Frosty Spring Slopes
02.12.2016 Women in Science
02.10.2016 Wind at Work
11.16.2015 Change Observed in Martian Sand Dune
10.05.2015 'The Martian' Story's Ares 4 Landing Site
10.05.2015 The Ares 3 Landing Site (Figure A)
09.30.2015 Avalanche Ho!
06.29.2015 Mars Exploration Zone Layout Considerations
06.17.2015 Active High-Latitude Dune Gullies
06.03.2015 Crisp Crater in Sirenum Fossae
05.20.2015 Sedimentary Rock Layers on a Crater Floor
05.20.2015 Honey, I Shrunk the Mesas
05.11.2015 Icy Wonderland
05.04.2015 Diverse Orbits Around Mars
03.27.2015 South Pole Spiders
03.27.2015 A Smile a Day....
03.25.2015 Pitted Landforms in Southern Hellas Planitia
03.12.2015 Curiosity Heading Away from 'Pahrump Hills'
02.18.2015 Lava Flow Near the Base of Olympus Mons
02.09.2015 Yardangs in Arsinoes Chaos, Mars
02.04.2015 Curiosity Rover at 'Pahrump Hills'
01.22.2015 Frost on Crater Slope
01.16.2015 Components of Beagle 2 Flight System on Mars
12.03.2014 An Enigmatic Feature in Athabasca Lava Flows
12.02.2014 NASA's Journey to Mars
11.07.2014 Mars Orbiter Sizes Up Passing Comet
10.19.2014 Siding Spring Mars Spacecraft
10.01.2014 Dunes and Ripples in Nili Patera
09.11.2014 Curiosity Rover Planned Route
09.11.2014 Geological Transition
09.11.2014 Bands on the 'Murray Formation'
Climate Sounder Instrument for Mars Reconnaissance OrbiterThe Mars Climate Sounder instrument, shown here prior to its installation onto NASA's Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter for the mission's 2006 launch, will get a similar-looking sibling at Mars in 2016.
The European Space Agency and NASA announced instrument selections in August 2010 for the joint European-American 2016 ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter mission. One of the five selected instruments, the ExoMars Climate Sounder, will closely resemble this predecessor, which is about 40 centimeters (16 inches) across.
The Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter has been studying Mars with six instruments since 2006. Its Mars Climate Sounder has provided a lengthening record of the changing vertical distributions of temperatures, dust, water vapor and ice clouds in the Martian atmosphere.
The ExoMars Climate Sounder will extend that record with flexibility for seeing slices of the atmosphere at all times of day, due to a different orbital geometry. The ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter will also carry instruments for detecting very low concentrations of methane and other gaseous clues about possible life on Mars. Information from the climate sounder will add context for understanding how transport and chemical reactions in the atmosphere affect trace gases.
The design for both the Mars Climate Sounder and the ExoMars Climate Sounder features two telescope "eyes" gathering infrared radiation measured in nine spectral bands. Two motors enable flexibility in pointing straight downward or toward the horizon in any direction.
NASA's Jet Propulsion Laboratory, Pasadena, Calif., supplied and operates the Mars Climate Sounder for the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter and will supply and operate the ExoMars Climate Sounder for the ExoMars Trace Gas Orbiter. JPL also manages the Mars Reconnaissance Orbiter mission for the NASA Science Mission Directorate and manages NASA's roles in the 2016 mission. JPL is a division of the California Institute of Technology.
Image Credit: NASA/JPL-Caltech