Forum for Science, Industry and Business

Sponsored by:     3M 
Search our Site:

 

CryoSat arrives safely at launch site in Russia

05.09.2005


After leaving the Space Test Centre in Germany on 29 August, CryoSat has safely arrived at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome, about 800 km north of Moscow, Russia. CryoSat is scheduled for launch on 8 October 2005 at 15h02 UTC.



The convoy was initially transported by truck from IABG (Industrieanlagen-Betriebsgesellschaft mbH) in Ottobrunn to Munich airport, where it was stored in a hangar over night before being loaded onto an Antonov-124 cargo aircraft for the three and a half hour flight to Talagi Airport, Archangel in Russia.

The spacecraft, however, did not travel alone – it was accompanied by a whole host of vital support equipment resulting in the shipment weighing in at around 60 tonnes and valuing some 80 million euros. The CryoSat satellite was packed in its own nitrogen-pressurized container, while nine other containers housed items such as racks of electrical equipment to operate and test the spacecraft, and heavy mechanical equipment to lift and turn the satellite allowing engineers to gain overall access to the structure in the Integration Facility at the launch site.


An advance team was already in Archangel, and after they had ensured that everything was in order to receive the cargo on arrival, they gave the go-ahead for the flight from Munich to take-off. After a safe landing in Archangel in the evening of 30 August, the convoy was transported by truck to the local train station where it was lifted onto railcars. For reasons of safety and security the special train made its journey through the night, arriving in Plesetsk on 1 September. So that the cargo wasn’t at risk of being damaged the train had to travel extremely slowly. It therefore took most of the night to cover the 200 km journey southward to CryoSat’s final destination.

CryoSat’s safe arrival in Plesetsk marks an important milestone in the project. The shipment was carried out with relative ease. Guy Ratier, CryoSat Project Manager commented, "Everything went according to plan. It is not the first time that ESA has used an Antonov, a fantastic plane indeed, to transport satellites to their launch site. Loading the plane was just a routine operation. The train transport between Archangel and Plesetsk was also uneventful, thanks to the wide experience gained by Eurockot and Khrunichev during previous campaigns. For sure, I consider this transportation step as a very good start towards a successful launch campaign."

CryoSat is the first in the series of Earth Explorer missions to be launched. Earth Explorers are small, inexpensive missions designed to provide some fast answers to a specific aspect of the Earth’s environment. In this case, CryoSat is to determine rates of change in the thickness of marine and continental ice cover.

With speed and a limited budget in mind, the CryoSat project have found an elegant solution for launch, that being a Russian Rockot vehicle, which is actually a converted SS-19 ballistic missile launcher with an additional Breeze-KM upper stage. CryoSat will be the first ESA mission launched on Rockot followed by the Earth Explorers GOCE (Gravity Field and Steady-State Ocean Circulation Explorer) in 2006 and SMOS (Soil Moisture and Ocean Salinity) in 2007.

Now that CryoSat has arrived, unloading and unpacking is underway and the launch campaign will begin. Members of the CryoSat team in Plesetsk will oversee the thorough final testing period before the satellite is eventually jointed to the fairing and prepared for launch on 8 October.

Guy Ratier | alfa
Further information:
http://www.esa.int/esaEO/SEMI58A5QCE_planet_0.html

More articles from Physics and Astronomy:

nachricht NASA's Fermi catches gamma-ray flashes from tropical storms
25.04.2017 | NASA/Goddard Space Flight Center

nachricht DGIST develops 20 times faster biosensor
24.04.2017 | DGIST (Daegu Gyeongbuk Institute of Science and Technology)

All articles from Physics and Astronomy >>>

The most recent press releases about innovation >>>

Die letzten 5 Focus-News des innovations-reports im Überblick:

Im Focus: Making lightweight construction suitable for series production

More and more automobile companies are focusing on body parts made of carbon fiber reinforced plastics (CFRP). However, manufacturing and repair costs must be further reduced in order to make CFRP more economical in use. Together with the Volkswagen AG and five other partners in the project HolQueSt 3D, the Laser Zentrum Hannover e.V. (LZH) has developed laser processes for the automatic trimming, drilling and repair of three-dimensional components.

Automated manufacturing processes are the basis for ultimately establishing the series production of CFRP components. In the project HolQueSt 3D, the LZH has...

Im Focus: Wonder material? Novel nanotube structure strengthens thin films for flexible electronics

Reflecting the structure of composites found in nature and the ancient world, researchers at the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign have synthesized thin carbon nanotube (CNT) textiles that exhibit both high electrical conductivity and a level of toughness that is about fifty times higher than copper films, currently used in electronics.

"The structural robustness of thin metal films has significant importance for the reliable operation of smart skin and flexible electronics including...

Im Focus: Deep inside Galaxy M87

The nearby, giant radio galaxy M87 hosts a supermassive black hole (BH) and is well-known for its bright jet dominating the spectrum over ten orders of magnitude in frequency. Due to its proximity, jet prominence, and the large black hole mass, M87 is the best laboratory for investigating the formation, acceleration, and collimation of relativistic jets. A research team led by Silke Britzen from the Max Planck Institute for Radio Astronomy in Bonn, Germany, has found strong indication for turbulent processes connecting the accretion disk and the jet of that galaxy providing insights into the longstanding problem of the origin of astrophysical jets.

Supermassive black holes form some of the most enigmatic phenomena in astrophysics. Their enormous energy output is supposed to be generated by the...

Im Focus: A Quantum Low Pass for Photons

Physicists in Garching observe novel quantum effect that limits the number of emitted photons.

The probability to find a certain number of photons inside a laser pulse usually corresponds to a classical distribution of independent events, the so-called...

Im Focus: Microprocessors based on a layer of just three atoms

Microprocessors based on atomically thin materials hold the promise of the evolution of traditional processors as well as new applications in the field of flexible electronics. Now, a TU Wien research team led by Thomas Müller has made a breakthrough in this field as part of an ongoing research project.

Two-dimensional materials, or 2D materials for short, are extremely versatile, although – or often more precisely because – they are made up of just one or a...

All Focus news of the innovation-report >>>

Anzeige

Anzeige

Event News

Expert meeting “Health Business Connect” will connect international medical technology companies

20.04.2017 | Event News

Wenn der Computer das Gehirn austrickst

18.04.2017 | Event News

7th International Conference on Crystalline Silicon Photovoltaics in Freiburg on April 3-5, 2017

03.04.2017 | Event News

 
Latest News

NASA's Fermi catches gamma-ray flashes from tropical storms

25.04.2017 | Physics and Astronomy

Researchers invent process to make sustainable rubber, plastics

25.04.2017 | Materials Sciences

Transfecting cells gently – the LZH presents a GNOME prototype at the Labvolution 2017

25.04.2017 | Life Sciences

VideoLinks
B2B-VideoLinks
More VideoLinks >>>