Entry 1: SMOS launch campaign begins

SMOS team members

11 September 2009 - The SMOS launch campaign has begun with an inspection of the facilities in Russia – both at Arkhangelsk, where the satellite and support equipment will arrive by Antonov aircraft, and the integration facilities at the Plesetsk launch site.

The team was in Russia last week to ensure that the infrastructure – from computer networks down to furniture – is all in place before the facilities are accepted as ready to receive the SMOS satellite.

Last inspection at Thales Alenia Space
Last inspection at Thales Alenia Space

The satellite is currently undergoing final inspection before being packed up for transit from Thales Alenia Space’s facilities in the south of France. Along with other containers carrying support equipment, it will be shipped late in the evening of 15 September by air from Nice to Arkhangelsk in northern Russia. After arriving early on 16 September the satellite and supporting equipment will continue their journey by rail to the launch site.

SMOS is scheduled for launch on 2 November at 02.50 CET.

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