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Solar Orbiter Satellite Successfully Tested: Invitation to an IABG International Press Event

On behalf of Airbus Defence & Space (UK), IABG has successfully completed the qualification tests on the Solar Orbiter space probe at its space centre. To mark this occasion, IABG, together with its partners ESA and Airbus Defence & Space, is extending an invitation to a press event at the Ottobrunn site on 18 October 2019.

In the course of the extensive test programme IABG verified the satellite's operational capability under space conditions. Previously, IABG had already carried out the tests on the structural model.

Following the delivery of the ESA science satellite by Airbus Defence & Space UK in September 2018, IABG began preparing the space simulation test. For this purpose, in IABG's largest thermal vacuum facility the space probe was exposed to various environmental conditions such as high vacuum, low and high temperatures as well as irradiation from the solar simulator. Particularly high requirements had to be met by the test facilities with regard to cleanliness conditions.

The thermal tests were followed by extensive mechanical tests. These included acoustic, vibration and shock tests as well as the determination of mass properties. The test programme also included electromagnetic compatibility tests (EMC). At the end of the test series IABG carried out very demanding magnetic tests at its Magnetic Field Simulation Facility (MFSA) which is unique in Europe.

IABG is expecting high-ranking guests from Airbus Defence & Space, ESA and press representatives from Germany and abroad to attend today's event. Experts from ESA, Airbus DS and IABG will present the mission, its technical challenges and scientific goals. The media will have the opportunity to see the satellite once more before it leaves IABG's test facilities and embarks on its journey to the American launch site at Cape Canaveral in Florida.

The task of the ESA Solar Orbiter programme is to observe the solar atmosphere with high spatial resolution and to combine this with particle and field measurements of the inner heliosphere. The mission is intended to provide answers to a number of unsolved questions concerning the physics of the heliosphere.

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