Russian Fobos-Grunt Launch

Launch of Russian Fobos-Grunt Mars Mission
Image Credit: NasaSpaceFlight Forum

Russia successfully launched a Zenit 2SB rocket carrying the Mars Fobos-Grunt (“Phobos-Soil”) spacecraft, designed to retrieve a sample from the Martian moon Phobos and return to Earth. The launch was on time at 19:16 UTC. Twelve minutes later, the spacecraft was in orbit.

Fobos-Grunt is carrying 20 instruments. The Gas Analytic Package, or GAP, will conduct gas chromatography of the soil of Phobos, and look for organic compounds. The Manipulator Instruments Set will study the composition if the soil through spectroscopy. A large array of other spectrometers are also aboard the spacecraft, including a gamma-ray spectrometer, a neutron spectrometer, an infrared spectrometer, a laser mass spectrometer, an ionic mass spectrometer, a visible optical spectrometer and an infrared optical spectrometer. These will study different elements of the soil’s composition.

Fobos-Grunt Spacecraft
Image Credit: NasaSpaceFlight

2 thoughts on “Russian Fobos-Grunt Launch

  1. Pingback: November 2011 « NSS Phoenix Space News

  2. Pingback: Fobos-Grunt Re-enters Earth’s Atmosphere « The National Space Society of Phoenix

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