Talk:Beagle 2

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I thought that the crater observed in the middle of the projected landing zone already existed before Beagle Two landed, the theory is that if it landed in this area the 'bounce and roll' landing system would be serverely compromised in it's ablity to minimse the shock to the lander. Even if succesful the shadow of the crater rim would severely reduce the ability of Beagle Two to charge up its batteries - which needed charging before the thing could broadcast its safe arrival.

On Rick's point above - maybe it would be worthwhile mentioning the high attrition rate of martian probes historically? -- PSD (sometime user of Wikipedia)

Can someone please go through this article and regularize the tenses? Lee M 03:46, 10 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Done Lisiate 02:24, 23 Feb 2004 (UTC)

Different news articles seem to have different figures regarding what the costs were for the Beagle 2. Any ideas on how to find out what the true costs were? --NeuronExMachina 03:38, 8 Sep 2004 (UTC)

The BBC [1] are reporting on a UK Parliamentary Select Committee on Beagle2's demise; Its probably worth adding details from their report to the article. One line summary --- "Insecurities over funding." CS Miller 14:10, Nov 2, 2004 (UTC)

Pity there are no photos of it, are they prohibited by copyright?

I don't think so. There are several images on Wikipedia already from ESA, so one could just use the tag used for those. I suggest somone put up the last photograph of Beagle 2, taken soon after release from the mothership.[2] --Planetary 03:59, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

Funding History[edit]

I have reverted edit by user:AllanHainey in which he suggests that lack of government funding led to project seeking "external funding". I think this may paint too negative a view of government support, and reading the report of the committee of inquiry the funding story seems much more complex, with non-government funding being thought about from very early in the project. I can't easily summarise the story in a short phrase, and so I prefer the original statement about publicity. Op. Deo 15:37, 26 September 2005 (UTC)

Beagle 2 in fiction[edit]

Is this section really needed? We can watch the Transformers trailer ourselves, thank you very much. No need to transcribe evrtyhing in the trailer into this article, just because they mention a fictional probe that happens to have the same name. If no one objects in the next 2 days, I will remove it.--Planetary 03:59, 29 July 2006 (UTC)

I did it, you're right. Way too much detail. --Guinnog 04:46, 29 July 2006 (UTC)
You're right. I saw the section, and thought it needed improving, but I guess I got carried away. Sorry. Ackander 14:57, 29 July 2006 (UTC).
Alright. In that case, disregard my previous message. --Planetary 06:26, 30 July 2006 (UTC)
I really don't like the fact that they say there was a rover on board though. I did the edit mostly because I was annoyed. --Ace-High 04:57, 8 August 2006 (UTC)

Maybe we should have a link to the trailer? As it is now, I seems like it doesn't have enough information for the section to be there at all. What I mean is, we don't have a way for users to find more information on the Beagle landing in the trailer, if they wanted to. I know that's confusing, but it's just a suggestion. -- Freddy Jade 04:05, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

Where are the images?[edit]

"On December 20, 2005, Professor Pillinger released [2] specially-processed images from the Mars Global Surveyor which may suggest that Beagle 2 came down in a crater at the landing site on Isidis Planitia."

Well? Where are the images? The link just goes to the beagle 2 homepage, which I've scoured looking for pictures of the purported crater, finding none. Could someone change the link to go to a more specific page that actually has the pictures?

Only found one image here[3], so I changed it to that for a quick fix. -- Freddy Jade 04:18, 12 December 2006 (UTC)
Please do not just grab images from other web sites to add them here! Most of them have a copyright that is not compatible with GFDL, and this includes images copyrighted by ESA. Awolf002 04:21, 12 December 2006 (UTC)
What are you talking about? I didn't copy and paste an image. I changed the link to a web page that has one of the pictures on the page. How is that going against copyright? I didn't add anything. Maybe you should look before you jump on other people. Some admin, maybe a misread? -- Freddy Jade 15:46, 12 December 2006 (UTC)
Yes, I have "jumped" a bit fast here. But I'd rather remind people about not adding incompatible images to WP, than explaining later why they needed to be deleted. Sorry, that you felt shouted at. That was not my intention. Awolf002 18:18, 12 December 2006 (UTC)

ESA/UK Inquiry report[edit]

In May, 2004, the report from the Commission of Inquiry on Beagle 2 was submitted [...] Professor David Southwood, ESA's director of science, listed the following scenarios how the landing might have failed:

  • Beagle entered an atmosphere that was not predicted by scientists and could have burnt up. It may even have "bounced off into space";

The report linked says that despite deviations in the atmospheric models due to experiences with Mars Express, the "entry mission design was sufficiently robust to tolerate these variations. Hence, the Commission concludes that the deviation in the atmospheric entry conditions is not a probable failure mode for Beagle 2." -- atropos235 (blah blah, my past) 23:11, 29 March 2007 (UTC)

Bad Design[edit]

I have never come across an explanation of how it was to clear its parachute and airbags on landing. It would seem to me highly likely that it would bounce up into its parachute canopy after impact and/or fail to have the airbags conveniently roll away after the connectors were cut. No other Mars probe rode its parachute all the way to the surface. This plus poor funding, short design time, severely constricted payload mass and failure during testing made me consider it unlikely to succeed (I guessed perhaps 30-40% chance of success the night before the landing). —The preceding unsigned comment was added by (talk) 06:53, 8 May 2007 (UTC).


This was not a European Space Agency probe, it was designed and operated by UK industry separate from ESA as the rest of the article states. In fact one of the criticisms in the report was a lack of coordination between the British team developing the probe and the ESA team working on the carrier Mars Express! ChiZeroOne (talk) 15:48, 27 September 2010 (UTC)


I have reinstated some original text in the opening paragraph. The possibility that Beagle 2 missed Mars altogether or skipped off the atmosphere and entered a solar orbit had been deleted. This represents a step backwards for Wikipedia in terms of the fullness of its reporting; no-one knows whether the craft entered the Martian atmosphere or not. For example, as the Mars Express was headed for the edge of the Martian disk, the Beagle, when seperating from the Mars Express, would only have to gain the tiniest amount of lateral velocity in the wrong direction (i.e. away from the Mars Express and away from the disk) to miss the atmosphere altogether, especially after 6 days of lateral drift. I have also replaced "failed to make ground contact" with the original text "failed to contact Earth", as the former herementioned introduces doubt, where none existed before, as to which ground we are talking about, Earth's or Mars'; again a step backwards for literary and explanatory standards. Further, "failed to make ground contact due to a fault" will be interpreted in many English-speaking countries as "failed to land, due to a fault" --whereas the fault, if any, may not have been caused until a landing occurred. Again, we move backwards in terms of the clarity of the original text, which is therefore here reinstated. The culprit, Ruslik0, is repeatedly reinstating his text without explanation. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Valhalan (talkcontribs) 21:42, 3 February 2011 (UTC)

Persistent attempts are still being made to replace informative text with inferior (i.e. less informative) text, in the first paragraph of the Article. — Preceding unsigned comment added by Valhalan (talkcontribs) 01:45, 5 February 2011 (UTC)

In regards to whether or not the Beagle 2 entered the Martian atmosphere or not, almost every source I can find states, or assumes, that it did. As a result, it is not appropriate to suggest otherwise. There is even less reason to believe that it is in orbit around the Sun. this page on NASA unfortunately states that it is a possibility, however the body of academic literature far outweighs that webpage. We would need a credible academic source before we could even entertain this possibility.
However, your removal of "ground contact" is appropriate. That is WP:JARGON, and quite confusing. I see now that you and Ruslik0 have collaborated to address this.
John Vandenberg (chat) 00:45, 25 April 2011 (UTC)
Indeed, NASA have suggested as a possibility that Beagle 2 is in orbit around the sun, and my "ground contact" point has also been accepted. All of which leaves me correct and blameless. So why all the criticism? Also, why is NASA's suggestion that the probe could be in solar orbit considered "unfortunate"? Doesn't that sound a little biased? It is also very unprofessional to be influenced by the "tribal" notion that the majority must be right and the minority must be wrong. In the best traditions of WP standards, shouldn't we be reporting both possibilities for the enlightenment of our readers? Regarding sources for the solar orbit possibility, I would have thought that NASA itself is a pretty reliable source. As seen from 6 days out in space, the edge of the Martian atmosphere is thinner than a knife-edge. Of course it is a possibility that the probe skipped off, as NASA correctly states. Valhalan ( (talk) 00:07, 28 April 2011 (UTC))


After laying low a while, the person responsible for replacing an original piece of informative text with inferior, misleading text has started up again. Still no reason given for his actions. See "Comment" below. Same culprit, Ruslik0. Valid explanation please!!( (talk) 23:02, 14 April 2011 (UTC))

This Vandalism has been reported to Wikipedia. The misuse of locking the site out has even been resorted to, in order to prevent the more informative text from being reinstated. This matter will be pursued relentlessly. ( (talk) 01:50, 23 April 2011 (UTC))

It isn't vandalism to remove the "in orbit around the Sun" claim. Claims like that need to be accompanied with a "WP:Reliable source", as evidence.

Oh for Goodness Sake! Low Standards A-Gain!![edit]

Ruslik0 has edited para 1 of the Article to read "It is not known for certain whether the lander reached the Martian surface",... and then...same para.... "The investigation revealed that Beagle 2 certainly reached the surface of Mars...". !!! Look...WP is the first reference people come to, when they use the search engines. Now get qualified in writing--or quit!!!

I have corrected this.


Note: Original version (Ruslik0): Nobody knows for certain that it reached the surface; it certainly reached the surface. ( A direct contradiction).

My version: Nobody knows for certain that it reached the surface; the investigation thought that it did.

( (talk) 16:06, 23 April 2011 (UTC))

"ground contact" has now been removed. Thank you, John Vandenberg (chat) 00:50, 25 April 2011 (UTC)

Mars probe missing for over a decade may have just been found[edit] — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 18:19, 13 January 2015 (UTC)

Updates on 16/1/15 at a press conference. — Preceding unsigned comment added by (talk) 19:27, 13 January 2015 (UTC)

potential authoritative links for article update source material: The NASA press release includes comment on the observed physical condition. The U.K. Royal society reports similar details, reports that the lead investigator for the Beagle mission had passed away in 2014, and has comments from the investigators spouse who was also connected with the mission. The U.K. government statement provides more technical detail with regards to incomplete deployment and the consequences for communications. A lead person from the mission study phase has comments. (talk) 23:29, 25 January 2015 (UTC)

If you see value in these sources in imrpoving the article, then do it. If you need help ask, even if its "I dont know where to start", someone will help you. Don't leave work for others. --RadioFan (talk) 18:04, 30 January 2015 (UTC)


The coordinates 12°54′N 87°00′E / 12.9°N 87.0°E / 12.9; 87.0 was several degrees off from the landing coordinates, more specifcally the landing ellipses, discussed in Mission Report published by the Beagle2/Mars Express team and has been updated with that report as a reference.--RadioFan (talk) 16:31, 18 January 2015 (UTC)

Charles Darwin??(disregard this)[edit]

"Beagle 2 is named after HMS Beagle, which twice carried Charles Darwin during expeditions which would later lead to the theory of natural selection."

This is vandalism right? Breckham101 (talk) 01:01, 22 January 2015 (UTC) Oops sorry guys, I misread that. I edited to make it more understandable. I thought they were saying the spaceship carried Charles Darwin and lead him to create the theory of evolution. XD Breckham101 (talk) 01:03, 22 January 2015 (UTC)

discovery date ?[edit]

The lead mentions it was discovered January 2015 but the discovery section says 2014. Kap 7 (talk) 01:54, 22 January 2015 (UTC)

No the lead says it was announced in 2015. As the prose mentions Beagle 2 was first spotted in HIRISE images in 2014. ChiZeroOne (talk) 04:47, 22 January 2015 (UTC)
It was last spotted in images from 2014, confirming it as the lander. It was imaged in previous years as well but not confirmed until late 2014 and announced in Jan 2015. The current working best captures that without being confusing.--RadioFan (talk) 18:09, 30 January 2015 (UTC)

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