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Thales Alenia Space España helps Mars Express spacecraft to give supports to NASA's Phoenix Lander

30 May 2008

Madrid, 30 Mayo, 2008 - Thales Alenia Space España, the Spanish subsidiary of Thales Alenia Space announced to be proud of its contribution on the successful Phoenix lander arrival at the Martian surface - Mars, by means of the several electronic equipment supplied to the ESA's Mars Express scientific satellite.

The European Space Agency completed a key step in the Agency's ongoing support to NASA's Phoenix mission, when signals from Phoenix recorded by Mars Express were successfully received at ESA's Space Operations Centre (ESOC), Darmstadt, Germany.

The Thales Alenia Space España's equipment embarked on board of the Mars Express satellite plays an important role in the performance of the satellite electronic. In this way, the company's role comprises of the design, manufacturing, test campaign and supply of the following equipments:

-The RTU (Remote Terminal Unit) provides bi-directional Telecommand (TC) and telemetry's (TM) communications between the payload and the on board satellite processor by means of the satellite bus.

-The AIU (Avionics Interface Unit) is an interface between the on board computer and all attitude control subsystems; it distributes commands and informs of the spacecraft avionics status.

-The RFDU (Radiofrequency Distribution Network) and WIU (Wave-guide Interfaces) make possible the harness RF interconnection between the antennas and the transponder equipment, and finally, the SADE (Solar Array Drive Electronic) is the electronic equipment to deploy and control the solar arrays.

Angel Post, CEO of Thales Alenia Space España stated his satisfaction of the collaboration of the Spanish company with ESA, for the extraordinary operation of the spacecraft Mars Express, and the success of the probe phoenix. He also added, to be proud of being a traditional ESA partner for RF and Digital Equipment with participation in over 20 different scientific satellite programs.

About Thales Alenia Space
European leader in satellite systems and a major player in orbital infrastructures, Thales Alenia Space is a joint venture between Thales (67%) and Finmeccanica (33%). Thales Alenia Space and Telespazio embody the two groups' "Space Alliance". Thales Alenia Space sets the global standard in solutions for space telecoms, radar and optical Earth observation, defence and security, navigation and science. The company has a total of 7,200 employees and 11 industrial sites, with design and manufacturing facilities in France, Italy, Spain and Belgium.

About Thales Alenia Space España
Is a Spanish subsidiary company of Thales Alenia Space, is a European leader in S-Band TTC, Passive RF and Digital Processing equipment and subsystems, with participation in more than 95 satellite programs with application in Telecommunication, optical and radar Earth observation, Science, Navigation and Space infrastructures.

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