June 15, 2010

Picard and PRISMA in orbit

The 2 satellites reached orbit Tuesday 15 June atop their Dnepr launcher after lifting off from the Yasny space base in Russia.

15 June 2010

1st telemetry around 18:00

This time there were no delays. Originally scheduled for March and postponed several times, the launch of the Picard and PRISMA satellites went off without a hitch on Tuesday 15 June from the Yasny space base, Russia.

The Russian-Ukrainian Dnepr launcher was ejected from its silo at 16:42 CET and then ignited. The Picard satellite separated from the launcher’s 3rd stage 15 minutes later, followed by PRISMA 6 seconds afterwards. Both satellites were injected into low-Earth orbit at an altitude of under 800 km.

The first signs of life from Picard will be visible from the receiving station in Kiruna, Sweden, at around 18:00. The PRISMA satellites, controlled from Sweden, should remain in orbit for 8 months but are expected to continue operating for a further 2 months after that.

As a mission partner, CNES will be getting experiment time on PRISMA to test out its FFIORD experiment. Engineers will have 75 days to prepare this experiment designed to develop new formation-flying techniques for future scientific instruments.

Reportage sur la 1ere chaîne de télévision russe. Crédits : 1tv.

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