From Mercury, Mars and Jupiter to asteroids and exoplanets

The exploration of the Solar System, which started in the 60’s with the Moon race, has been targeting since the following decade the nearest and most similar planets to Earth, Venus and Mars, to progressively reach all the other bodies and extreme borders of the system. Both Italy and the ASI have been contributing in a decisive way, for at least two decades, to the most important international missions in this field.

Italian scientific instruments can be found aboard American and European probes such as Mars Express, TGO and MRO (orbiting around Mars), BepiColombo, which studies Mercury and ExoMars, which will land an automatic rover on Mars. Italy was also protagonist of the Cassini-Huygens mission (which studied the Saturn system) and the Rosetta mission (which studied the comet Churyumov-Gerasimenko) and will be aboard the next European probes targeted at studying the exoplanets Cheops and Plato.

‣ All the missions

BEPI COLOMBO

BEPI COLOMBO ‣

ESA mission targeted at studying Mercury. There are 4 Italian instruments on-board

MARS EXPRESS

MARS EXPRESS ‣

The European Space Agency orbiter, targeted at studying Mars, is equipped with different Italian instruments among which is the Marsis radar, which detected the presence of water under the surface of the Red Planet

CHEOPS

CHEOPS ‣

CHEOPS is a European Space Agency project targeted at studying the extrasolar planets

JUNO

JUNO ‣

NASA mission orbiting around Jupiter, to which Italy provided two essential instruments

MARS RECONNAISSANCE ORBITER (MRO)

MARS RECONNAISSANCE ORBITER (MRO) ‣

The NASA Orbiter for the study of Mars, with the Italian Sharad radar on-board

EXOMARS

EXOMARS ‣

ExoMars is a double ESA mission under Italian guidance, carried out in cooperation with Roscosmos

Hinode

Hinode ‣

The HINODE mission was developed through a joint venture between the JAXA (Japanese Aerospace Exploration Agency) and the NASA and aims at studying the characteristics of the Sun and its motions

Osiris-Rex

Osiris-Rex ‣

It’s a NASA mission aimed at studying the asteroid Bennu

Soho

Soho ‣

SOHO is a space telescope located 1,5 million kilometers away from Earth, which continuously monitors the Sun’s turbulent activit

Solar Orbiter

Solar Orbiter ‣

Solar Orbiter will allow, for the first time, to study the Sun at a distance of 0, 28 Astronomical Units and observe its polar regions from a close orbit

Stereo

Stereo ‣

Scientific mission aimed at studying the Sun


Juice

Juice ‣

JUICE is a European Space Agency mission targeted at studying Jupiter and its icy moons: Ganymede, Europe and Callisto

Plato

Plato ‣

The PLATO mission consists of a satellite equipped with 34 small telescopes, targeted at searching for extrasolar planets around bright stars

DAWN

DAWN ‣

Dawn was the only space vehicle to orbit around two different celestial bodies in the deep space: the asteroid Vesta and the dwarf planet Ceres

CASSINI

CASSINI ‣

The Cassini-Huygens mission, carried out in cooperation between the NASA, the ESA and the ASI, aimed at studying Saturn and its satellite and ring system

STARDUST

STARDUST ‣

Stardust is the fourth mission of the NASA Discovery programme, and the first mission whose only focus is on exploring a comet, Wild 2

GIOTTO

GIOTTO ‣

GIOTTO is a European Space Agency probe, designed for the up-close exploration of the Comet Halley during its perihelium, which occurred in 1986

ROSETTA

ROSETTA ‣

Rosetta is the main Cornerstone mission of the ESA Horizon 2000 programme to explore the celestial bodies of the Solar System. Its goal is studying the origin of comets

SMART-1

SMART-1 ‣

SMART-1 is the first European space shuttle that travelled and orbited around the Moon

Venus Express

Venus Express ‣

Venus Express is an ESA mission aimed at studying the formation, differentiation and evolution of Venus

‣ News

WEDNESDAY 20 MAY 2020

The Prisma Mission opens to the community ‣

Now that the commissioning phase and the calibration/validation activities have been completed PRISMA is finally ready to open the mission exploitation by the user community. MORE...

THURSDAY 30 APRIL 2020

The Earth’s tides move the continents ‣

Astronomical forces such as solid Earth’s tides play an active role on plate tectonics: this is the results of a research conducted by the Sapienza University of Rome, the Italian Space Agency (ASI) and the Istituto Nazionale di Geofisica e Vulcanologia (INGV). MORE...

THURSDAY 16 APRIL 2020

Cheops is ready for hunting ‣

The scientific operations of the space mission Cheops officially started. The mission, with an important Italian participation, explores the Universe to give us an in-depth look at new worlds MORE...

MONDAY 02 SEPTEMBER 2019

IKUNS NanoSatellite, a virtuous example of the Italo-Kenyan Cooperation in the Space sector ‣

The project was presented on August 24th 2019, during an event dedicated to Leonardo da Vinci MORE...

THURSDAY 22 AUGUST 2019

Parmitano starts Nutriss ‣

Nutriss will be the first scientific activity of ASI in orbit for Luca Parmitano, astronaut of the European Space Agency on the International Space Station. Meanwhile, the third of six Italian experiments is ready to take off. MORE...