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'Jules Verne' Automated Transfer Vehicle Ready To Leave For International Space Station

Date:
March 4, 2008
Source:
European Space Agency
Summary:
With ESA's Columbus laboratory successfully attached and operating on the International Space Station, the time has now come for another European milestone mission to leave for the ISS -- that of the first Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV), named "Jules Verne."

Back to article Fairing lowered over Jules Verne ATV Download: HI-RES JPEG (Size: 162 kb) Jules Verne, the first Automated Transfer Vehicle, has been integrated and encapsulated under its huge fairing on top of its Ariane 5 launcher. With a total mass of about 19 360 kg, Jules Verne is the largest payload ever launched by Ariane 5. The historical mission with the first European space supplier for the ISS is scheduled for a night time launch on 8 March at 01:23 local time in French Guiana (04.23 UT).
Credit: 2008 - ESA /CNES/Arianespace/Photo optique video du CSG

With ESA’s Columbus laboratory successfully attached and operating on the International Space Station, the time has now come for another European milestone mission to leave for the ISS - that of the first Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV), named 'Jules Verne'.

Europe’s massive 19 357 kg supply spacecraft will be carried into orbit by a special version of the Ariane 5 launcher. This Ariane is scheduled to lift off from Europe’s spaceport in Kourou, French Guiana on March 9, rather than March 8. ESA and Arianespace decided to postpone the launch by one day. The Jules Verne launch is rescheduled for 00:59 Kourou time, 03:59 UTC, 04:59 CET on Sunday 9 March 2008.

From 2008 onward, ESA’s Automated Transfer Vehicle will be one of the space station’s supply spacecraft, delivering experiments, equipment and spare parts, as well as food, air and water for its permanent crew.

Constructed by EADS-Astrium, the ATV, which is the most powerful automatic spaceship ever built, will carry up to 9 tonnes of cargo to the station as it orbits 400 km above the Earth.

Equipped with its own propulsion and navigation systems, the ATV is a multi-functional spacecraft, combining the fully automatic capabilities of an unmanned vehicle with the safety requirements of a crewed vehicle. Its mission in space will resemble that, on the ground, of a truck (the ATV) delivering goods and services to a research establishment (the space station).

A new-generation high-precision navigation system will guide the ATV on a rendezvous trajectory towards the station. In early April, Jules Verne will automatically dock with the station’s Russian Service Module, following a number of specific operations and manoeuvres to show that the vehicle is performing as planned in nominal and contingency situations.

It will remain there as a pressurised and integral part of the station for up to six months until a controlled re-entry into the Earth’s atmosphere takes place, during which it will burn up and, in the process, dispose of 6.3 tonnes of waste material no longer needed on the station.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by European Space Agency. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Cite This Page:

European Space Agency. "'Jules Verne' Automated Transfer Vehicle Ready To Leave For International Space Station." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 4 March 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080229102056.htm>.
European Space Agency. (2008, March 4). 'Jules Verne' Automated Transfer Vehicle Ready To Leave For International Space Station. ScienceDaily. Retrieved April 24, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080229102056.htm
European Space Agency. "'Jules Verne' Automated Transfer Vehicle Ready To Leave For International Space Station." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/02/080229102056.htm (accessed April 24, 2014).

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