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Umbilical Release Mechanism for ExoMars 2020 mission
- Client: Airbus Defense and Space Ltd.
- Country: United Kingdom
- Start date: 2015
- Ending date: 2020
Establishing whether life ever existed or is still active on Mars is one of the principal outstanding scientiﬁc questions of our time; It is also a necessary prerequisite to prepare for the future human exploration endeavors.
To achieve this important objective ESA, in cooperation with Roscosmos and including a scientiﬁc instrument contribution from NASA,has launched the ExoMars mission. The ExoMars mission will search for traces of past and present life, characterize the Mars geochemistry and water distribution, improve the knowledge of the Mars environment and geophysics, and identify possible surface hazards to future human exploration missions.
Thales Alenia Space Italia has been awarded the contract as prime contract for ExoMars mission and concluded Airbus Defence & Space as Lead Contractor for the Rover Vehicle. SENER in Poland. has been selected as the contractor responsible for the Umbilical Release Mechanism (URM) for the rover vehicle.
The URMs are the equipments which provide an electrical connection between the Rover and the Lander Platform during the launch, cruise, entry, descent and landing phases of the mission. There are 2 URMs on the rover (1 nominal and 1 redundant). The URMs provide the mechanical support to the umbilical harness under these environments.
After landing, the URMs remain connected whilst the rover deploys its wheels and lifts itself up from the lander platform. The URMs are then released on command and the lander side of the URM is collapsed down onto the lander platform to ensure the rover can egress onto the Mars surface.
- The URMs provide mechanical support to the umbilical connector harness all along the mission.
- After landing, the URMs remain connected whilst the Rover deploys its wheels and lifts itself up from the Lander Platform.
- The URMs are then released on command and collapsed down onto the Lander Platform to ensure the Rover can egress onto the Mars surface without any interference.
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