Europa Penetrator animation

We’ve just finished this HD animation showing Astrium‘s design for a Europa Penetrator mission. The penetrator will be released from an altitude of around 200km, and after a de-orbit burn to cancel the orbital velocity, it goes into freefall, spins up for stability, and impacts into Europa at around 300mph. Once under the surface, the suite of on board instruments begin work (having survived the 25,000g of impact), including a drill to take samples, a microscope and mass spectrometer to analyse samples, as well as seismometers and radiation detectors.

Read more about the mission on Jonathan Amos’ blog at the BBC.