Press release

The University of Liège associated with the first results of NOMAD

NOMAD is an instrument of the Martian probe ExoMars

In Research

Two articles in Nature provide the first observations sent by the Belgian instrument NOMAD, on the absence of methane and the global dust storm last June on Mars

ESA released this week the first results obtained by the NOMAD instrument on board the Russian-European ExoMars TGO (Trace Gas Orbiter) probe.

NOMAD is a Belgian instrument designed at the Institute of Space Aeronomy (IASB), tested and calibrated at the Centre Spatial de Liège (CSL, ULiège).

These results were presented in Vienna at the meeting of the European Geophysical Society, in parallel with their publication in two articles in the journal Nature.

See the press meeting in Vienna on 10 April 2019


The first article concerns the gigantic global dust storm observed in June 2018 and the disturbances generated in the atmosphere of Mars.

The second examines the controversial issue of methane on Mars. Against all odds, he concluded that methane was not detected by TGO.

Astrophysicists at the University of Liège are closely associated with these results. In addition to the role of CSL in the development of NOMAD, several researchers from the Laboratory of Atmospheric and Planetary Physics (LPAP, UR STAR) are part of the scientific team that analyses the data collected by NOMAD.

In addition, Professor Jean-Claude Gérard (LPAP, ULiège) is co-investigator of the NOMAD (Belgian) and ACS (Russian) experiments on board TGO. He is co-author of the first of these two articles. The NOMAD scientific team as a whole is associated with both articles.

It should also be noted that researchers from ULiège's LPAP are also actively involved in the analysis of Mars atmosphere observations currently being made by another mission, NASA's MAVEN mission, which has been orbiting Mars for several years now.


Pr Jean-Claude GÉRARD


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