In addition to collecting samples, MMX will also perform remote sensing of Mars and its moons using a suite of observational instruments.
It remains unclear how the two small Martian moons were formed and what processes they have since experienced. The surface of Phobos seen in visible and near infrared light is not uniform, leading to the possibility that there are different constituent materials. Discussions are being held by Japanese and international scientists to determine where the samples should be collected. Observational data obtained by the remote sensing instruments will be used to determine the sampling locations.
TENGOO / OROCHI
TENGOO stands for “TElescopic Nadir imager for GeOmOrphology”.
This is a telescopic (narrow angle) camera for observing the detailed terrain on the surface of the Martian moons. TENGOO can capture surface images at a resolution of about 40cm and obtain information on the distribution of different materials that correspond to the collected samples. It can also be used for checking safety at the planned landing site.
OROCHI stands for “Optical RadiOmeter composed of CHromatic Imagers”.
This is a wide angle camera to observe the topography and material compositions on the Martian moon surface. It can take images in the visible light reflected from the Martian moon's surface at multiple wavelengths to identify hydrated materials and organic matter, both globally and at the sampling locations.
Rikkyo University, Professor
LIDAR stands for “Light Detection And Ranging”.
This is a ranging instrument to observe information on the shape of the Martian moon surface. LIDAR uses a laser to reflect light from the moon's surface. The surface altitude and albedo distribution can be derived from measuring the time taken for reflected light to return, and the energy of the reflected light.
Chiba Institute of Technology, Senior Fellow
MIRS stands for “MMX InfraRed Spectrometer”.
This is a near-infrared observation instrument to clarify the characteristics of minerals constituting the Martian moon. With spectroscopic measurements in near-infrared light in the 0.9 - 3.6 microns spectral band, MIRS can measure the distribution of hydrous minerals, water related substances and any organic matter over the whole surface and be used for the selection of sampling locations. MIRS is being developed at LESIA-Paris Observatory in collaboration with four other French laboratories (LAB, LATMOS, LAM, IRAP-OMP) and in partnership with the French space agency, Centre National d'Etudes Spatiales (CNES).
Maria Antonietta Barucci
Laboratoire d'Etudes Spatiales et d'Instrumentation en Astrophysique, Professor
MEGANE stands for "Mars-moon Exploration with GAmma rays and NEutrons".
This is a gamma ray and neutron observation instrument to clarify the characteristics of chemical elements constituting Martian moon. By observing gamma rays and neutrons released from atoms on the surface layer, the composition of the major elements and hydrogen in the global surface layer can be observed and these measurements used for selecting sampling locations. MEGANE is being developed in partnership with the US space agency, NASA.
David J. Lawrence
The Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory, Planetary Scientist
CMDM stands for “Circum-Martian Dust Monitor”.
This is a device for clarifying the dust environment around the Martin moon. By measuring the dust abundance of 10 μm or more in size, the frequency of collision of celestial bodies that generate dust and the phenomenon of dust reintegration on Martian moons can be investigated.
Planetary Exploration Research Center Chiba Institute of Technology Senior Staff Scientist
Speciality: Planetary Exploration
I am extremely excited to be able to participate in the MMX mission. We are aiming to discover the Martian circulation dust that has been theoretically predicted for many years but has not been found yet. Although there is a long way to go before we get to the goal, we try our best.
MSA stand for “Mass Spectrum Analyzer”.
This is an instrument to clarify the ion environment around the Martian moon. The presence of ice inside the Martian moon, the weathering effect on the Martian moon surface, and the amount of Martian atmosphere dissipation can be investigated by measuring ions released from the Martian moon, ions released from Mars, and the ions in the solar wind.
Osaka University, Associate Professor