Proba-2 back in its storage container in the cleanroom
Enabling & Support

Entry 13: Letting SMOS take its turn

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ESA / Enabling & Support / Space Engineering & Technology / Proba Missions

Monday 14th September – Today is a day for packing up: with Proba-2 fully integrated and system testing concluded, in a couple of days the team is leaving Plesetsk… at least temporarily.

Now is the turn of the SMOS launch team to arrive, to prepare their satellite for launch – the two ESA missions sharing the same launcher.

The Proba-2 team is however returning in mid October, for the second part of the launch campaign. This will be dedicated to the integration of little Proba-2 with the launcher adapter, and its mating with the rocket upper stage, after which the satellite’s ‘big brother’ SMOS gets placed on top of it in the launcher fairing. Until this point however, Proba-2 stays stored in its container in the clean room, and all the team’s ground support equipment is also being secured.

The aim of today’s packing is to enable the swift redeployment all equipment once the team returns, when joint operations with the SMOS team will take place. At 15:00 Proba-2 is back in its container, to the satisfaction and relief of the whole team. It’s goodbye to Proba-2, and… see you in three weeks!

It is from this little room that the team will, in a matter of weeks, be performing battery health monitoring and charging of Proba-2 up to launch day. Meanwhile at the MIK all data gathered during yesterday’s testing undergoes thorough analysis.

That night a formal dinner event takes place at the team’s hotel, attended by representatives of all involved parties to celebrate the successful conclusion of the first Proba-2 launch campaign phase.

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Proba-2, final checks
Enabling & Support

Entry 1: Belgium says goodbye to Proba-2

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Loading of Proba-2 container in cargo plane at Brussels airport
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Entry 2: Proba-2's journey to Plesetsk

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Transport of Proba-2 container to the MIK
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Entry 3: Unpacking after the trip

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Opening of the Proba-2 satellite container in the cleanroom
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Entry 4: Proba-2 unloaded and ready for inspection

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Hoisting of satellite from its container and assembly of integration dolly
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Entry 5: Proba-2 powered up

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Inspection of Proba-2 internal compartments
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Entry 6: End-to-end testing

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Filling of the propulsion tank with xeon
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Entry 7: Filling Proba-2 up with xenon

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Mounting of the first deployable solar panel
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Entry 8: Proba-2 gains a solar panel

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Mounting of solar panel
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Entry 9: Proba-2 gains its second ‘wing’

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Proba-2 with solar panels mounted
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Entry 10: Completing Proba-2

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Proba-2 final full functional test
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Entry 11: Putting Proba-2 to the test

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Proba-2 launch team group picture at the museum
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Entry 12: Checking launch tower links

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Proba-2 back in its storage container in the cleanroom
Enabling & Support

Entry 13: Letting SMOS take its turn

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Proba-2 team arrival at Plesetsk Cosmodrome
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Entry 14: Second phase of Proba-2 launch campaign begins

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ESP mounting on the final panel
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Entry 15: Last bolts tightened on Proba-2

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Proba-2
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Entry 16: A short journey off the ground – Proba-2 mated to…

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Proba-2 in its final launch position, on top of Breeze
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Entry 17: Proba-2 mated onto Breeze upper stage

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Removal of Proba-2 protective covers
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Entry 18: Encapsulated, Proba-2 vanishes from view forever

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Encapsulation
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Entry 19: Proba-2 in place and powered up

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SMOS, Proba-2 and Khrunichev teams
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Entry 20: Rail ride to the launch pad

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Joined dress rehearsal of Proba-2 and SMOS in MCC
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Entry 21: Far-flung dress rehearsal for launch

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