CATS is installed at the ISS

CATS, an experiment studying cloud aerosols (rather like predecessors CloudSAT and CALIPSO in the A-Train constellation), has been installed on the ISS.  One of the unique features of the SpaceX Dragon that makes it so useful to NASA is its large unpressurized “trunk” section, which the station’s DEXTRE robot can easily reach into to extract payloads for installation on the exterior.  The CATS instrument was delivered in this way, and installed on the Japanes Kibo module’s Exposed Facility.  SSRMS picked up the DEXTRE robot, maneuvered it into position, allowed DEXTRE to extend the appropriate arm, and then slid it into the Dragon trunk.  DEXTRE unfastened the CATS instrument, grappled it, and then withdrew it from the trunk.  SSRMS then swung both around towards the Japanese module.  The Japanese arm then received CATS from DEXTRE and installed it on the EF.

A job well done.  😉  Here’s teh short version, along with some other cool stuff they’re doing at the ISS right now:

And here’s a longer time-lapse (without sound) if you really want to see how the whole sequence went:


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