"ESA and its international team have added an important achievement to the exploration of Mars by putting the Trace Gas Orbiter into orbit around the Red Planet as a platform for science investigation and communication infrastructure," said Jim Green, director, Planetary Science Division, NASA Headquarters in Washington. "The Trace Gas Orbiter enables ESA now to provide NASA with a UHF data relay package valuable for the upcoming Mars InSight and Mars 2020 missions. ESA will also use it for the ExoMars rover to be launched in 2020."
Green continued, "Landing a spacecraft on Mars is extremely challenging. We admire the initiative and development of the teams that worked on the Schiaparelli lander that was part of the ExoMars mission. International collaborations, as well as future work with private industry remain crucial elements of the Journey to Mars and beyond."
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