Monday, August 10, 2015

Weekend Flight Preparations

The BARREL team had an action-packed weekend of launch preparations and payload testing.

We set out four payloads over the course of beautiful Saturday and had them complete their comprehensive tests.

Greg sets out a Pelican case to support a fourth payload outside.

The payload we intend to fly on Monday (today!) is 2S, now renamed 3A as the first payload on the third campaign. 2S is special in that it carries its magnetometer on a long boom. All payloads in previous campaigns had this attachment, but this campaign is primarily keeping the magnetometers sealed within the payload box itself. Its backup payload is 2H, which has no such boom.

Sunday saw worse weather, but we successfully completed flight preparations by weighing the payloads/flight trains for 2S, 2H, and 1Z, an alternative back up.

Following tests on Sunday, we went out into Jukkasjärvi, the small town that houses Esrange.

A beautiful lake in Jukkasjärvi.

We drove through sunset on our way home — this time at 9:57 pm! We've been gaining eight minutes of darkness each day.

As of Monday morning, we have passed Esrange's Flight Compatibility Test and had our required NASA Flight Readiness Review. Monday afternoon we are go for launch of payload 2S/3A! Stay tuned for the post-launch update, including photos from the FCT and pre-launch preparations.