JUICE, the JUpiter ICy moons Explorer mission led by the European Space Agency (ESA), has left Airbus’ satellite integration centre in Friedrichshafen (Germany) and is now on its way to the Large Space Simulator (LSS) chamber of the European Space Agency (ESA) in Noordwijk (Netherlands) for its first taste of space.
Over the next 12 months, starting with 31 days in the vacuum chamber in the LSS, the spacecraft will be exposed to the environmental conditions of space and will have to prove it is ready for its journey via Venus and Mars to Jupiter and its mission in the Jovian system.
Since its arrival 12 months ago at the Airbus site, JUICE has been kitted out with its final components including harness, power electronics, on-board computer, communication systems, navigation sensors, thermal hardware and crucially its scientific instruments. At the ESA test centre at ESTEC in Noordwijk, the spacecraft will undergo a full environmental test campaign including verifying its thermal control system and its electrical elements.
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