Latest Galileo satellites en route to French Guiana spaceport

May 15, 2014
Credit: ESA-Anneke Le Floc'h

Here's how a satellite makes an exit: one of Europe's latest Galileos snapped at the point of departing ESA's test centre in the Netherlands.

The departure took place on 5 May. After several months of testing, this latest full-capability Galileo navigation satellite left along with its twin.

Both satellites were loaded aboard trucks to be driven to Frankfurt Airport in Germany. From there, they were flown to Europe's Spaceport in French Guiana the following evening.

ESA's centre is the largest satellite testing facility in Europe, with everything needed to recreate every aspect of the launch and space environment under one air-conditioned roof.

So, before leaving this carefully controlled environment, the satellites were both placed inside their own specially designed containers, maintaining their temperature, humidity and air cleanliness within rigid limits.

The two satellites will be launched together by a Soyuz later this summer.

Galileo satellites will continue to be tested here for flight before proceeding to South America – another had already arrived here in late April, with another due soon.

Explore further: Latest Galileo satellite arrives at ESA's test centre

add to favorites email to friend print save as pdf

Related Stories

Latest Galileo satellite arrives at ESA's test centre

May 01, 2014

Europe's latest Galileo navigation satellite has arrived at the Agency's technical centre in the Netherlands for testing, as the previous two satellites are prepared for shipping to French Guiana for launch ...

New breed of satellites

Jun 25, 2013

(Phys.org) —These pictures give the first detailed views of the next batch of Galileo satellites, the first of which has already been delivered to ESA for rigorous testing in simulated space conditions.

ESA to certify first Galileo position fixes worldwide

Mar 13, 2014

To mark the first anniversary of Galileo's historic first satnav positioning measurement, ESA plans to award certificates to groups who picked up signals from the four satellites in orbit to perform their ...

Recommended for you

Rosetta measures comet's temperature

1 hour ago

(Phys.org) —ESA's Rosetta spacecraft has made its first temperature measurements of its target comet, finding that it is too hot to be covered in ice and must instead have a dark, dusty crust.

How Rosetta arrives at a comet

3 hours ago

After travelling nearly 6.4 billion kilometres through the Solar System, ESA's Rosetta is closing in on its target. But how does a spacecraft actually arrive at a comet?

Lunar occultation of Saturn

3 hours ago

On the night of Monday August 4, mainland Australia will see Saturn disappear behind the moon. It's the third time this year that the moon and Saturn will perfectly line up, as viewed from our part of the ...

SHERLOC to micro-map Mars minerals and carbon rings

5 hours ago

(Phys.org) —An ultraviolet-light instrument on the robotic arm of NASA's Mars 2020 rover will use two types of ultraviolet-light spectroscopy, plus a versatile camera, to help meet the mission's ambitious ...

NuSTAR celebrates two years of science in space

6 hours ago

(Phys.org) —NASA's Nuclear Spectroscopic Telescope Array, or NuSTAR, a premier black-hole hunter among other talents, has finished up its two-year prime mission, and will be moving onto its next phase, ...

User comments : 0