Dear Friends of ARCHIMEDES and the Mars Society,
The MIRIAM Instrument Pod, Service Module and Camera Module each underwent a complete flight simulation test cycle yesterday, September 18, at our own lab and the DLR field center Oberpfaffenhofen.
All flight sequence tests were completed without incidents, all events came on mark and all readings were nominal. The instrument pod’s camera acquired the picture attached to this e-amil, with flight software programmer Kevin Phelan substituting the Moon and the horizon backdropped against the vastness of our lab. This camera will later be adjusted in focus and the optics fixed to withstand vibration loads.
Coming up next is a complete flight sequence simulation with all modules interconnected and a pressurized inflation systems deck. If all modules check out well again, the Miriam Entry Vehicle (the actual Ballute) will be assembled and installed inside the service module.
On Monday, the entire setup will be spin balanced and receive another vibration qualification test at reduced levels, to check-out the interlock mechanisms again, and to check the final system for any shifts in Eigenfrequencies. Once this battery of tests is completed, the entire rocket nose section will be assembled and delivered to the Moraba rocket launch group in Oberpfaffenhofen for shipment to the launch site.
Keep your fingers crossed for our baby!
ARCHIMEDES is an effort to probe the atmosphere of planet Mars by means of a hypersonic drag balloon, a device known as a “ballute”. The project is currently under study, proposed and supported by the Mars Society Germany, the Universität der Bundeswehr München, the AMSAT-DL .e.V. organization, the DLR, and several other research institutions and industrial companies. The probe is planned to be integrated into the AMSAT’s P5-A Mars satellite, and to be released from the spacecraft when in orbit around the planet. Launch of the P5-A is currently planned for late 2011 as a piggyback payload on an Ariane V rocket, as it is standard practice for spacecraft of the German AMSAT section. It is jointly developed by The Mars Society Germany and several institutes of the University of the Federal Armed Forces of Germany in Munich.
MIRIAM combines all research programs within the ARCHIMEDES development program, and is currently planned for launch to a 200km peak altitude from the SSC ESRANGE rocket test site near Kiruna, North Sweden on top of the REXUS4 sounding rocket managed and built by the DLR Moraba group of Oberpfaffenhofen, Germany. MIRIAM’s launch is now planned for October 21, 2008.
To obtain more information please feel free to direct inquiries to either hgGEENSPAMmarssociety.de or hannes.griebelGEENSPAMunibw.de. (vervang GEENSPAM door het @ symbool)