Galileo FOC satellite spreads its wings the first time

The assembly and tests of the first Galileo FOC satellite are progressing at ESA facilities. The solar panels have been delivered and attached to the satellite. The spreading of the delicate construction was accomplished with the aid of gravity compensating lever system.

Since this satellite and the next three are the first of their kind, the current procedure is also a training on the job for the different assembly crews. Their testing period will be more extensive covering to pure assembly testing also part of the system’s design.

The launch of the satellite and its twin at ESA’s launch site is still scheduled for October 2013 (see also inPosition news). So far the recent launch failure of three GLONASS satellites does not trigger delays (see inPosition news). The launch vehicle used for the GLONASS satellites is different from the Soyuz model used by ESA for Galileo launches. Presumably only major findings or possible causes of the GLONASS launch disaster may have an impact and incur delays.

(Source: ESA Navigation page )