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On Target
On Target
20 Dec 2003
(Source: European Space Agency)

ESA News

20 December 2003

Retargeting complete

At 11:50 CET [1050 UTC], flight controllers at ESOC confirmed the success of a crucial repointing manoeuvre, setting Mars Express on its final course for Mars Orbit Insertion.

Yesterday, in order to send Beagle 2 on its way to a Mars landing, Mars Express first had to be steered onto a collision course with the planet.

Today's manoeuvre successfully redirected the spacecraft away from Mars, back to a point 400 kilometres above the surface, where it is due to enter orbit early on Christmas Day.

IMAGE CAPTION: [] The Mars Express orbiter is being retargeted to avoid collision with Mars.

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Last Updated: 23 Dec 2003