TITUSVILLE: NASA and Astrotech hosted media today for a look at the Tracking and Data Relay Satellite (TDRS-M) before encapsulation in advance of the launch scheduled for August 3, 2017 at 9:03 AM. On hand were Robert P. Buchanan, TDRS Deputy Project Manager from NASA Goddard Space Flight Center and Jim Jenkins, Boeing Launch Campaign Manager.
This annotated photo shows the TDRS-M satellite just prior to encapsulation at the Astrotech Facility in Titusville. Photo credit: Bill Jelen / We Report Space
The spacecraft is on schedule according to Jenkins. It left California on a transport aircraft on June 22, 2017 and arrived in Titusville on the morning of June 23, 2017. Ingress to Astrotech took a week. Functional testing happened from June 27 – July 6. This involves 4 days of bus and payload testing and four days of propulsion. The spacecraft was fueled over five days: a day of preparation, then Oxygen loading, a day of crew rest, another day of preparation and then a day for Metal Hydride loading.
Friday, July 14, 2017 marks the start of combined operations, as United Launch Alliance will begin steps to encapsulate the spacecraft in the faring. The spacecraft will head to ...