minigallery: ESA teams in Germany and Russia in last GOCE rehearsal
A selection of images taken at ESOC, the European Space Operations Centre, Darmstadt, Germany, and at the ESA support room at the Plesetsk Cosmodrome, Russia, during the final rehearsal for GOCE launch, Friday, 13 March, 2009.
In Darmstadt, the Mission Control Team worked 'on-console' in the Main Control Room, supported by an extended network of ESA engineering teams and specialists. In Plesetsk, the ESA team, including Agency members and industrial representatives, worked in the ESA support room to monitor activity in the Russian Mission Control Centre.
The day-long simulation saw practise commands sent to the actual GOCE spacecraft from the Russian Mission Control Centre, while, from ESOC, test commands were sent to all supporting ground stations. The teams practiced countdown and launch up until the planned acquisition of signal from GOCE, expected about 90 minutes after liftoff.