With ‘stand-alone’ functional tests all completed and the satellite transported to the fuelling hall, authorisation to fuel has been given following the Flight Readiness Review.
Sentinel-1B will therefore be fuelled today and will be carried out by propulsion specialists from Thales Alenia Space. This is a hazardous operation so the team has to wear protection suits and the fuelling area is closed off to everyone else.
Yesterday also marked the end of the ‘Interleaved Operations Phase’ where the spacecraft and launcher activities are done in parallel.
Following another review last night, the go-ahead was also given for the combined spacecraft/launcher activities in accordance with the Arianespace dedicated Combined Operations Plan. This will start on Friday 8 April.
So, all is on track for liftoff on 22 April.
For information about our Sentinel-1 mission visit www.esa.int/sentinel-1
From the ESA Sentinel-1B team in Kourou.