The European Space Agency’s ExoMars program will investigate the Martian environment and test new technologies. The program involves two missions.
The first mission, which launched on March 14, consists of the Trace Gas Orbiter and an entry, descent, and landing demonstrator module named Schiaparelli. The orbiter will detect and study atmospheric trace gases. Schiaparelli has sensors that will evaluate its performance as it descends, and others that will study the environment at its landing site. The spacecraft will reach Mars in October and begin five years of scientific studies in December 2017.
The second mission features a rover and is planned for launch in 2018.
The artist concept shows all three elements of the ExoMars program.