10 Feb 2004
(Source: European Space Agency)
Rosetta Lander successfully completes on-ground check-out
Euorpean Space Agency
February 10, 2004
January 2004 saw the completion of the on-ground check-out activities of the Rosetta Lander at CSG, Kourou, French Guiana.
The check-out team took the Lander through a flawless "Cruise Abbreviated Functional Test". This test successfully demonstrated that all Lander subsystem and payload units were as alive and well as expected. To round off the test series, the electrical configuration was finalized for launch, the primary battery was checked out, and the secondary battery was fully charged. Finally, the harpoons, which in 10.5 years' time will secure the Lander to the comet surface, were mounted.
By now, only a few protective covers and other "remove-before-flight" items still have to be removed (including tip protectors of the harpoons, still present on the picture you see here), and the plug that sets the Lander to the Arm status will be installed late February, when Rosetta is atop its Launch Vehicle.
In addition, the Lander staff graduated from their refresher Safety Training to be cleared for work at the BAF (Ariane 5 Final Assembly Building), where that last "remove-before-flight" and arming task will be performed.? No small feat!