Sentinel-3B: on the dolly

Following its arrival at the Plesetsk launch site, the Sentinel-3B satellite has been taken out of its transport container and placed on its ‘tilting dolly’. This dolly holds the satellite in various positions, allowing the engineers to access different parts of the craft.

It will remain in a horizontal position until Monday – allowing it to ‘rest’ after its journey from France.

Resting on the dolly. (ESA)

This is a significant step in the launch campaign: Sentinel-3B safely in the Plesetsk facilities and positioned ready for testing.

With this milestone passed, the cleanroom has now been freed of big equipment such as the transport container and horizontal handling device that have done their duty.

Positioning Sentinel-3B on the dolly. (ESA)

The temperature (19.4°C) and humidity (40–45%) in the control room 111 have been stabilised so that the electrical team can start to validate the electrical ground support equipment following transportation.

A humidifier has been installed as a precautionary measure as the humidity should not drop lower than 40%.

The umbilical rack, which provides power and the telemetry/telecommand interface to the satellite, and the overall check out equipment, control station of the test bench, have been given priority to allow the satellite to be switched on for the first time.

On the Rockot launcher side, everything is progressing as it should. The satellite fairing is in the MIK General Hall, ready to enter 101B, the Russian part of the cleanroom. The booster unit is currently being prepared for its electrical tests, and the Breeze upper stage is undergoing checks.

The weather in Plesetsk is snow and –4°C/–14°C

From the ESA Sentinel-3Blaunch campaign team in Plesetsk

Read more about the Sentinel-3 mission

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