The payload module of MetOp-C, Europe’s latest weather satellite, being lowered into Europe’s largest vacuum chamber, the 10 m-diameter Large Space Simulator, on 20 February 2017.
The LSS is part of ESA’s Test Centre in the Netherlands, the largest facility of its kind in Europe, providing a complete suite of equipment for all aspects of satellite testing under a single roof.
MetOp-C’s instruments must be tested in space-like vacuum conditions. High-performance pumps will remove all air within the chamber to create an orbital-quality vacuum. Meanwhile, liquid nitrogen will circulate through the black walls to mimic the cold of sunless space.