The fifth and final Automated Transfer Vehicle, Georges Lemaitre, has departed the International Space Station, an event requiring coordination between controllers in Moscow (Zvezda control), Houston (ISS attitude control), and Toulouse (ATV control). A planned deorbit test involving a shallow reentry has been cancelled due to a power failure on board the ISS, affecting an instrument that was going to observe the event, but a device on board Georges Lemaitre will still monitor conditions inside the large ATV during reentry to understand how such large vehicles experience reentry. The device has a heatshield that will enable it to survive long enough to transmit its data, even though the ATV itself will be destroyed.
Tag Archives: Zvezda
Cygnus has returned to Earth . . . technically. Yesterday, the spacecraft made a firey reentry, burning up in the atmosphere over the south Pacific. The ISS crew had a lovely view of the destructive reentry, as it was night over that part of the Earth as they went overhead. SpaceflightNow has a lovely image gallery. 😉
Today, the Russians conducted a spacewalk outside the ISS, installing a European experiment package, performing maintenance activities on the Russian segment, collecting samples off of Zvezda’s exterior to evaluate deposition of combustion products from its propulsion system over the past fourteen years in orbit, and also hand-launching a tiny nanosatellite for Peru. Here, cosmonaut Oleg Artemyev has just released the Chasqui 1 imaging nanosatellite, which is floating away at top right.