Monthly Newsletter

September 2002

(6.2 OBC & APE) was loaded on September 19. The software up-grade will capture all the test track updates and improve the APE and CEU performance. This new upgrade will allow the Comprehensive Performance Testing to continue as scheduled for the rest of the month.

Following the final optical alignments, the solar array installation, deployment testing, stowing and blanketing will take place. Orbital will also be very involved in preparing for the upcoming Mission Operations rehearsal at LASP, since this will be the final testing before SORCE leaves for the launch site. As this rehearsal is being conducted from the LASP Mission Operations Center using the engineering model satellite hardware (called the flatsat, located at Orbital's facilities in Sterling, VA), the spacecraft will undergo Mass Properties testing to determine the craft's mass distribution. These data are critical to proper operation of the spacecraft attitude control system.

The month of October will also include additional Mission Operations tests as well as a Long Duration test. The purpose of the Long Duration test is to allow the spacecraft to run uninterrupted for 5 straight days, making contact with LASP two times per day, just like it will be doing in orbit. This will serve as the final verification that both the spacecraft and the mission operators are ready for the move to the launch site.

Kennedy Space Center Activity -
Launch preparations are well underway, with Kennedy Space Center (KSC) preparing for SORCE'S arrival. LASP engineers will participate in a Ground Operations Review Meeting at KSC on September 24 and 25 to discuss SORCE requirements. After testing at Orbital has concluded and the Pre-Ship Review (PSR) conducted, the SORCE spacecraft and the Ground Support Equipment (GSE) required to move, operate, and test the spacecraft will be prepared for shipment to KSC. The scheduled ship-date to KSC is October 25. SORCE will be transported by chartered truck, with Orbital and LASP personnel closely monitoring from a separate chase vehicle. The shipment will arrive at KSC on Saturday, October 26, and will immediately be unpacked. At that point, the post-ship checkout and Pegasus integration process will commence.

A SORCE technician checks the bolts connecting the Instrument Module platform to the Spacecraft Bus.

Upcoming Meetings
SORCE scientists plan to present papers or attend the following 2002 - 2003 meetings:

  • COSPAR, Oct. 14-19, Houston, TX
  • AMS, Nov. 4-8, San Antonio, TX
  • NIST Satellite Instrument Calibration Workshop, Nov. 5-7, Gaithersburg, MD
  • EOS Investigators Working Group Nov. 18-20, Ellicott City, MD
  • AGU Fall Meeting, Dec. 6-10, San Francisco, CA
  • AAS, Jan. 5-9, Seattle, WA
  • AMS, Feb. 9-13, Long Beach, CA
  • AAAS, Feb. 13-18, Denver, CO

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