InSight Robot Lands on Mars

Experience the High-risk Landing of InSight on Mars

An event for the general public, free entry* Monday 26 November

Programme for the Evening

5.30 – 8 pm: Spectators welcome, a chance to wander through the sensory events on the site.

8 – 9.30 pm: Thematic presentations and live monitoring of landing operations

9.54 pm: InSight landing live with commentary from specialists at Cité de l’espace and interviews from the JPL control centre in California with our special envoy.

Monday 26 November 2018, from 5.30 pm, Cité de l’espace offers you the chance to experience live the final phases of InSight landing on the planet Mars, with experts and scientific presenters. Many sensory events which are unique and accessible to all will be going on throughout the evening so you can explore in a hands-on way the difficulties of this landing, as if you were on Mars! The key scientific challenges of this new Martian exploration mission will also be revealed using simple experiments, with the help of the scientific stakeholders involved in this space mission.

This exceptional evening, organised in collaboration with CNES and ISAE-SUPAERO, with the support of the Institut of Limayrac, will plunge you into the reality of a planetary exploration mission, at the heart of the operational teams. Together, we will follow the last moments of the landing, with live commentary and broadcast on all the Cité de l’espace’s screens.

“Listen to the Beating of the Heart of Mars”: a World First
The success of this landing will see the beginning of a great NASA space mission, in which France is heavily involved. Thanks to its main instrument, the SEIS seismometer, a project supervised by CNES, in collaboration with ISAE-SUPAERO, the IPGP (Institut de Physique du Globe de Paris) and various European scientific laboratories.
The aim of SEIS is to analyse “Mars quakes” and meteoric impacts to visualise its interior. CNES has developed a dedicated ground segment at Toulouse space Centre, SISMOC (SeIS on Mars Operation Center), to analyse the telemetry coming from Mars and develop SEIS’s remote controls throughout the mission. This is an ambitious world first, in which France plays a major role.
InSight’s landing on 26 November thus represents a great gamble and holds as much suspense as the greatest moments of space exploration.

Cité de l’espace’s Facilities

InSight’s Landing on Mars, as if You Were There!
Motivated by the desire to communicate, Cité de l’espace wants to show the new InSight Martian saga through an unprecedented event loaded with suspense. Intended for the general public and completely free (by prior registration*), this space news event organised by Cité de l’espace with CNES and ISAE-SUPAERO aspires to inform about all the difficulties of the Martian environment by recreating the sensory world of a landing on the red planet and so sharing the stakes of this highly risky challenge. This original meeting will enable people to experience InSight’s arrival at its most tense moments, with a commentary by many guests.

Experts and engineers who prepared this space mission will share their knowledge and emotions and comments on how the operations are going. A special envoy of Cité de l’espace, present at NASA’s JPL Control Centre (Jet Propulsion Laboratory) in California will share with the Cité de l’espace audience the JPL atmosphere and will interview mission stakeholders.
Live emotions and explanations guaranteed.

A Programme of Events Laid On at Cité de l’espace to Explore the Martian Environment

Orange soil, volcanic rocks, welcome to Mars! Imagine yourself on the Red planet’s heart, a special observer of the landing. Cité de l’espace will offer, especially for this evening event, a wide programme of events which, in particular, will feature the recreation of the dust cloud raised by InSight’s retro-rockets, as well as the wind they generate. You will experience the noise and the power of the jets as if you were on Mars!

The most adventurous could even have an introduction to walking on Mars thanks to the Astrojump simulator, recreating the gravity conditions on the planet: you will be 3 times lighter than on Earth!
To touch the red planet, a laboratory of 100% Martian experiments will also be on offer. On the agenda, making a Martian atmosphere, ice and CO2 ice, a Martian wind or even a Martian dust storm…

Go to the Heart of the InSight Martian Mission

Thanks to the on-site life-size model (6 m x 2.5 m) of InSight, used by CNES for the preparation phase of the mission, Cité de l’espace offers the public the chance to replay the radio test principle designed by engineers to assess the best area to deploy the SEIS seismometer.
A device will also simulate the entrance of the probe into the Martian atmosphere: using a welding-torch at 1800ºC! This visual and sensory experiment will enable a better understanding of the protective effectiveness of a thermal shield.

Using a vibration sensor, the scientific presenters of Cité de l’espace will also demonstrate to the public the principles of terrestrial and Martian seismometry and compare it to the sensitivity of the InSight mission’s SEIS seismometer.

“Cité de l’espace is a place designed to share with the widest audience the challenges and advances of current space exploration. Located at the heart of the European space capital, we want to share scientific research through original, hands-on and accessible experiments,” explains Jean Baptiste Desbois, General Director of Cité de l’espace.

Presenters of the Event on 26 November

Cité de l’espace’s Team
Christophe CHAFFARDON, Director, Education and Scientific Mediation, Cité de l’espace
Hosting the event, Christophe Chaffardon will alternate with his guests during the highlights of this exceptional evening: interviews with experts, demonstration videos, spectacular events, direct link with JPL in California, monitoring NASA images live.

Philippe DRONEAU, Director of Mission, Cité de l’espace
With his great knowledge of space missions, Philippe Droneau will comment on the various landing phases, along with the engineers and scientists present.

Xavier PENOT, Scientific Mediator, Cité de l’espace
With the Cité de l’espace’s team of scientific presenters, Xavier Penot will help the audience understand Mars’s characteristics and the features of this crucial stage of the mission, using hands-on and often spectacular experiments.

Olivier SANGUY, Editor of the Cité de l’espace Space News Site
Olivier Sanguy will be the special envoy of Cité de l’espace at the NASA Jet Propulsion Laboratory (JPL) in California, and will help us experience the live atmosphere in the control room, along with the engineers and scientists who are there.

And the entire Cité de l’espace team will be mobilised to help the public, young and old, experience an unforgettable day in the history of space conquest.

The Experts Involved in the Insight Evening

Sylvestre MAURICE, Astrophysicist IRAP

Sylvestre Maurice is an astrophysicist and planetologist at IRAP (Toulouse University III Paul Sabatier, CNRS, CNES). He has participated in many exploratory missions of the Solar System. With his American colleagues, he discovered ice at the Moon’s poles (1998) and Mercury’s poles (2011), as well as on the surface of Mars (2004). He is jointly responsible for the ChemCam instrument on board the Curiosity Rover. This instrument provided the first French data from the surface of Mars in 2012, and enabled the mission’s other instruments to demonstrate the former habitability of Mars (2013). He was also jointly responsible for the RLS and SuperCam instruments for ESA and NASA Martian Rovers which will take off in 2020. He is a scientific expert at the Cité de l’espace. He teaches at Toulouse University and is co-author of about 150 scientific articles.

Agnès JULLIEN, SEIS Instrument Operation Manager at CNES
Agnès Jullien joined CNES in January 2006, in French Guiana, within the safeguard flight where she ensures the safety of people and goods during launches from the space base for 8 years. In 2012, she joined the ATV (Automatic Transfer Vehicle) project, at CNES in Toulouse, to do orbitography calculations to dock the vehicle at the International Space Station (ISS). Once the project is completed, in 2015, she integrates Martian projects where she splits her time between operations on the ChemCam instrument, an integral part of the Curiosity rover (MSL-Mars Sciences Laboratory mission) and the preparation of operations to the landing on Mars of SEIS. She is part of the team that sends the orders to the instrument, in relation with the scientists and experts of the SEIS project.

Jean-Marie MOURET, Head of the SEIS instrument, CNES
Jean-Marie Mouret has been operating for 10 years on the Microsat/Myriade satellite development programmes, in various projects, such as Demeter and Picard. In 2010, he entered the Balloons Sub-Department as Head of the “Pods Technical Balloons” Service, a facility responsible for the development of service pods, payload pods, associated ground segments, as well as means of integration and environmental testing. In April 2016, he joined the SEIS project, responsible for monitoring development, supplying the various components of European partners and as Deputy to the Instrument Lead. He thus participated in various handover, delivery, receipt and validation campaign activities for the instrument models (FM flight model, SF replacement, QM qualification) as well as in the preparation phases for operations on Mars.

Alexis PILLET, Head of SEIS Seismometer Integration, CNES
In 2007 Alexis Paillet joined the Production Integration Service in the Assembly and Function Validation Sub-Department. Head of integration and functional validation activities on the French ChemCam instrument, he is currently working on the MSL-Curiosity Rover. In 2012, he joined the SEIS project as head of the SEIS instrument’s integration and functional validation, monitoring all 5 models produced: STM (structural model), EM (electrical model), QM (qualification model), FM ( currently in InSight), FS (the replacement model currently at the JPL in the event of an anomaly during the deployment phase). His work was to manage a team of 12 to define all ground, mechanical and electrical means for assembling and integrating the models, prepare and monitor the various environmental tests which the instrument undergoes on the launch of the cruise between the Earth and Mars, landing and lifespan on the Martian surface; functional validation of the instrument, monitoring the SEIS instrument during the integration phase at Lockheed Martin (supervisor for the JPL of the lander), preparation alongside the Head of instrument for in-flight operations.

Pierre BOUSQUET, Head of Mission Solar System, CNES
Pierre Bousquet is currently senior expert in planetology and microgravity in the sub-department of Scientific Projects of the Orbital Systems Department of CNES. Until late 2016 he directed the service where the Insight Mission’s SEIS instrument was developed. He is technical adviser to the French Delegation to the Managing Council for Manned Flights, Microgravity and Exploration of the European Space Agency (ESA), associate member of the International Academy of Astronautics (IAA), and senior member of the French Aerospace and Astronautical Association (AAF).

Philippe MARCHAL, Deputy Director of Orbital Systems, CNES
Philippe Marchal learned about space activity working on on-board and payload jobs, for R&T and pre-project and project work for CNES. For more than 10 years he set up, installed and directed a sub-department (a first at CNES) combining all work on craft-to-surface systems and interfaces which was at the core of preparation and production of many docking operations, particularly for the Myriade and Protéus satellite missions, for the Pléiade optical observation satellites, for the 5 ATV missions to the ISS and for the Galileo constellation satellites, launched in pairs or quadruplets.

Raphael F. GARCIA, Joint Scientific Head of the InSight Mission, Professor and Researcher at ISAE-SUPAERO
After preparatory classes at the Pierre de Fermat Lycée, he joined ENS-Lyon in 1995. His Ph. D. in 2001 at the Midi-Pyrénées Observatory was on identifying the deep structure of the Earth by seismology. Lecturer at Paris Diderot University (2002-2006), then Toulouse Paul Sabatier University (2006-2013), he developed research in space and planetary seismology. He joined ISAE-SUPAERO in 2013, becoming a scientist on the InSight mission, and head of the EntrySat Nano Satellite developed by the Institute. Among its major results, the detection by a satellite (GOCE) of seismic waves in the atmosphere come to mind, as well as detection of the Moon’s core using instruments deployed by astronauts during the Apollo missions. A scientist looking for seismic waves by looking at the high atmosphere and the depths of planets.

Laurent POU, Ph D Student in Planetology at ISAE-SUPAERO
His thesis is on the InSight Mission and the French SEIS seismometer. His work concerns the deformation of Mars and the changes in gravity on the surface of the red planet due to one of its moons, Phobos. The aim of this study is to learn more about the internal structure of Mars, particularly on the liquid or solid state of its core and its size.

About Cité de l’Espace
Stimulating curiosity, the desire to learn more, creating scientific vocations, making space, astronomy and scientific culture accessible to all, these are the aims which underpin the Cité de l’espace’s activities with the support of its partners, especially Toulouse Métropole. Cité de l’espace is the leading European site for the distribution of space and astronomy news to the general public. Cité de l’espace is a Toulouse Métropole facility, opened in 1997 on the initiative of Toulouse City Hall, with the support of the Occitanie Region, its co-founders CNES, Airbus, Météo-France, the Ministry of National Education, and the participation of its associate partners,Thales Alenia Space, Caisse d’Epargne Midi-Pyrénées,Caisse des Dépôts et Consignations, ESA (the European Space Agency), Canopé, TOULOUSE III Paul-Sabatier University, CNRS, OMP, IRAP, Snecma, Onera.
More information here Twitter @CiteEspace facebook @cite.espace.toulouse

About CNES
CNES (National Centre for Space Studies) is the public body responsible for formulating French space policy and implementing it in Europe. It designs and puts satellites into orbit and invents tomorrow’s space systems; it promotes the emergence of new services, useful on a daily basis. CNES, established in 1961, is the origin of great space projects, launchers and satellites and is the natural contact of the industry to promote innovation. CNES has almost 2,500 employees, women and men who are passionate about space which opens infinite, innovative fields of application and work in five areas: Ariane, science, observation, telecommunications and defence. CNES is a major player in technological innovation, economic development and industrial policy in France. It also establishes scientific partnerships and is committed to many international collaborations. France, represented by CNES, is the main contributor to the European Space Agency (ESA).
More information at: Twitter @CNES facebook @CNESFrance

World leader in higher education for aerospace engineering, ISAE-SUPAERO, under the supervision of the Ministry for the Armed Forces, offers a full and unique range of very high level education: ISAE-SUPAERO engineer training programmes and learning-based CNAM-ISAE, 1 Masters course in aviation and space engineering taught in English, 5 research-oriented Masters courses, 14 Specialist Masters courses, 6 doctoral schools. It pursues a research policy which is oriented to the future needs of aerospace and high-tech industries with which it has established more than ten teaching and research chairs. ISAE-SUPAERO is a founding member of Toulouse University, in which it is the aerospace centre with initiatives such as the GIS Microdrones and the CSUT (Toulouse University Space Centre). It is also a founder member of the ISAE Group (ISAE-SUPAERO, ISAE-ENSMA, ESTACA, Ecole de l’Air, Supmeca). At the international level, ISAE-SUPAERO works with major European universities (TU Munich, TU Delft, ETSIA Madrid, Politecnico Torino and Milano, KTH Stockholm, Imperial College, Cranfield,…), North American universities (Caltech, Stanford, Georgia Tech, UC Berkeley, EP Montreal…), Latin-American and Asian universities. ISAE-SUPAERO brings together some 100 teachers and researchers, 1800 visiting lecturers from the professional world, and almost 1700 students at first degree level. More than 30% of its 650 annual graduates are foreign. Its alumni network has more than 21,500 graduates. More information on: @ISAE_officiel

(*) Compulsory registration at the event, subject to availability
Trailer here – The event is broadcast live on the Cité de l’Espace website and on YouTube
To learn more about the InSight mission, click here
To share the experience: @CiteEspace @NASAInSight @CNES @InSight_IPGP @ISAE_officiel @IPGP_officiel @IRAP_france @institutLMRC #MARS

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Event Location: Cité de l’espace, Ave. Jean Gonord, 31500 Toulouse

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