It’s less than two hours to go before Alexander Gerst will team up with the METERON Ops-Com 2 team located at ESOC in Darmstadt, Germany, to drive the Eurobot Rover, located at Estec, the Netherlands, from the International Space Station (ISS).
METERON stands for ‘Multi-purpose End To End Robotic Operations Network’.
This is a remote rover control experiment which will further test the Disruptive Tolerant Network (DTN).
The Eurobot has been booted 30 minutes earlier than expected, which is a very promising sign.
As this is being written, the first command is being sent through the system. This is a test command, which will travel from Germany, to the ISS, and back to the rover. And the command was successful!
Spirits are high, as this is the end of a month’s intense work. The team, in varying combinations, have spent many long hours in the control room conducting experiments with the network and monitoring control systems, ready for today’s high profile experiment.
The team have been tweeting their preparations all day. You can follow them @esa_meteron or @ESA.