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SSC Communication System Flys On Russian Capsule Foton

File image of the Esrange Space Center.
by Staff Writers
Esrange, Sweden (SPX) Sep 20, 2007
The SSC-developed communication system Telescience Support Unit (TSU) has been launched into space. The system is being used by the European Space Agency (ESA) onboard the Russian space capsule Foton M3. This is SSC's fourth delivery of a TSU for Foton, and this time, SSC's engineers have developed a new generation of the system. The TSU will store and process data from ten experiments onboard the capsule.

The information will be transmitted to Esrange Space Center - SSC's facility in northern Sweden - from where the scientists can monitor and control their experiments. For these real-time studies, the new SSC software RAMSES will be used.

In the beginning of April, the TSU system was delivered to ESTEC, ESA's research and technology centre in the Netherlands, where a Mission Simulation Test was performed. Some forty scientists took part in simulations of Foton's first and last three days in orbit. In the end of May, the TSU was flown to Samara in Russia for integration and tests in the Foton capsule. The capsule was then transported to Baikonur for final tests and launch.

In Baikonur, all instruments onboard Foton M3 were checked to make sure they were intact after the transport. SSC's engineers on site have verified that the TSU works fine. It will now be submitted to numerous communication tests with the experiments.

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