Contents of the STS-46PK.TXT file
STS-46 PRESS KIT
NATIONAL AERONAUTICS AND SPACE ADMINISTRATION
SPACE SHUTTLE MISSION
STS-46 PRESS KIT
PUBLIC AFFAIRS CONTACTS
Office of Space Flight/Office of Space Systems Development
Mark Hess/Jim Cast/Ed Campion
Office of Space Science
Paula Cleggett-Haleim/Mike Braukus/Brian Dunbar
Office of Commercial Programs
Office of Aeronautics and Space Technology
Drucella Andersen/Les Dorr
Office of Safety & Mission Quality/Office of Space
Ames Research Center Langley Research Center
Jane Hutchison Jean Drummond Clough
Dryden Flight Research Facility Lewis Research Center
Nancy Lovato Mary Ann Peto
Goddard Space Flight Center Marshall Space Flight Center
Dolores Beasley Mike Simmons
Jet Propulsion Laboratory Stennis Space Center
James Wilson Myron Webb
Johnson Space Center Wallops Flight Center
James Hartsfield Keith Koehler
Kennedy Space Center
General Release 1
Media Services Information 2
Summary of Major Activities 4
Payload and Vehicle Weights 5
Trajectory Sequence of Events 7
Space Shuttle Abort Modes 8
Prelaunch Processing 9
Tethered Satellite System (TSS-1) 10
European Retrievable Carrier (EURECA) 31
Evaluation of Oxygen Interaction with Materials (EOIM)/
Two Phase Mounting Plate Experiment (TEMP) 45
Consortium for Materials Development
in Space (Complex Autonomous Payload) 47
Limited Duration Space Environment
Candidate Materials Exposure (LDCE) 48
Pituitary Growth Hormone Cell Function (PHCF) 50
IMAX Cargo Bay Camera (ICBC) 50
Air Force Maui Optical Station (AMOS) 53
Ultraviolet Plume Imager (UVPI) 53
STS-46 Crew Biographies 53
Mission Management for STS-46 56
49th SHUTTLE FLIGHT TO DEPLOY TETHERED SATELLITE SYSTEM
Shuttle mission STS-46 will be highlighted by the deployment
of the Tethered Satellite System-1 (TSS-1), an Italian space
agency-developed satellite, from the Shuttle cargo bay while
attached to a 12.5-mile-long cable for 31 hours to explore the
dynamics and electricity-generating capacity of such a system.
Also, the European Retrievable Carrier (EURECA) platform will be
placed into orbit from Atlantis to expose several experiments to
weightlessness for about 9 months before being retrieved by a
Shuttle in late April 1993.
In addition to EURECA and TSS-1, Atlantis also will carry
the Evaluation of Oxygen Interaction with Materials III and
Thermal Energy Management (EOIM and TEMP 2A) experiments in the
cargo bay. EOIM will explore the interaction of various
materials with the atomic oxygen present in low-Earth orbit, and
the TEMP 2A experiment will test a new cooling method that may be
used in future spacecraft.
An IMAX camera also will be in the payload bay to film
various aspects of the mission for later IMAX productions, and
the Consortium for Material Development in Space Complex
Autonomous Payload and Limited Duration Space Environment
Candidate Materials Exposure experiments will explore materials
processing methods in weightlessness.
Atlantis will be commanded by USAF Col. Loren Shriver,
making his third Shuttle flight. Marine Corps Major Andy Allen
will serve as Pilot, making his first flight. Mission
specialists will include Claude Nicollier, a European Space
Agency astronaut making his first Shuttle flight; Marsha Ivins,
making her second Shuttle flight; Jeff Hoffman, making his third
space flight; and Franklin Chang-Diaz, making his third space
flight. Franco Malerba from the Italian Space Agency will be a
payload specialist aboard Atlantis .
Currently planned for a mid-July launch, STS-46, Atlantis'
12th flight, is scheduled to last 6 days, 22 hours and 11
minutes, with a planned Kennedy Space Center, Fla., landing.
MEDIA SERVICES INFORMATION
NASA Select Television Transmission
NASA Select television is available on Satcom F-2R,
Transponder 13, located at 72 degrees west longitude; frequency
3960.0 MHz, audio 6.8 MHz.
The schedule for television transmissions from the
orbiter and for the mission briefings will be available during
the mission at Kennedy Space Center, Fla; Marshall Space Flight
Center, Huntsville; Ames-Dryden Flight Research Facility,
Edwards, Calif.; Johnson Space Center, Houston, and NASA
Headquarters, Washington, D.C. The television schedule will be
updated to reflect changes dictated by mission operations.
Television schedules also may be obtained by calling
COMSTOR 713/483-5817. COMSTOR is a computer data base service
requiring the use of a telephone modem. A voice update of the
television schedule is updated daily at noon Eastern time.
Status reports on countdown and mission progress, on-
orbit activities and landing operations will be produced by the
appropriate NASA news center.
A mission press briefing schedule will be issued prior to
launch. During the mission, change-of-shift briefings by the
off-going flight director and the science team will occur at
least once per day. The updated NASA Select television schedule
will indicate when mission briefings are planned.
STS-46 QUICK LOOK
Launch Date/Site: July 21, 1992 - Kennedy Space Center,
Fla., Pad 39B
Launch Window: 9:48 a.m. - 12:18 p.m. EDT
Orbiter: Atlantis (OV-104)
Orbit: 230 n.m. x 230 n.m. (EURECA deploy)
160 n.m. x 160 n.m. (TSS operations)
128 n.m. x 128 n.m. (EOIM operations)
Landing Date/Time: 7:57 a.m. EDT July 28, 1992
Primary Landing Site: Kennedy Space Center, Fla.
Abort Landing Sites: Return to Launch Site - Kennedy Space
Transoceanic Abort Landing -
Banjul, The Gambia
Alternates - Ben Guerir,
Morocco; Moron, Spain
Abort Once Around - Edwards Air Force
Crew: Loren Shriver, Commander
Andy Allen, Pilot
Claude Nicollier, Mission Specialist 1
Marsha Ivins, Mission Specialist 2
Jeff Hoffman, Mission Specialist 3
Franklin Chang-Diaz, Mission
Franco Malerba, Payload Specialist 1
Operational shifts: Red team -- Ivins, Hoffman, Chang-Diaz
Blue team -- Nicollier, Allen, Malerba
Cargo Bay Payloads: TSS-1 (Tethered Satellite System-1)
EURECA-1L (European Retrievable
EOIM-III/TEMP 2A (Evaluation of Oxygen
Integration with Materials/Thermal
CONCAP II (Consortium for Materials
Development in Space Complex
ICBC (IMAX Cargo Bay Camera)
LDCE (Limited Duration Space
Environment Candidate Materials
Middeck Payloads: AMOS (Air Force Maui Optical Site)
PHCF (Pituitary Growth Hormone Cell
UVPI (Ultraviolet Plume Instrument)
STS-46 SUMMARY OF MAJOR ACTIVITIES
Blue Team Flight Day One: Red Team Flight Day One
Orbit insertion (230 x 230 n.m.)
TSS deployer checkout
Blue Flight Day Two: Red Flight Day Two:
EURECA deploy TEMP-2A operations
EURECA stationkeeping Tether Optical Phenomenon (TOP)
Blue Flight Day Three: Red Flight Day Three:
TOP checkout TSS checkout/in-bay operations
Supply water dump nozzle DTO
OMS-4 burn (160 x 160 n.m.)
Blue Flight Day Four: Red Flight Day Four:
TSS in-bay operations TSS deploy
Blue Flight Day Five: Red Flight Day Five:
TSS on station 1 (12.5 miles) TSS retrieval to 1.5 miles
TSS final retrieval
Blue Flight Day Six: Red Flight Day Six:
TSS safing EOIM/TEMP-2A operations
TSS in-bay operations
OMS-6 burn (128 x 128 nm)
Blue Flight Day Seven: Red Flight Day Seven:
TSS science deactivation EOIM/TEMP-2A operations
EOIM/TEMP-2A operations Flight Control Systems checkout
Reaction Control System hot-fire
Blue Flight Day Eight: Red Flight Day Eight:
Entry and landing
STS-46 VEHICLE AND PAYLOAD WEIGHTS
Orbiter (Atlantis) empty, and 3 SSMEs 151,377
Tethered Satellite -- pallet,
support equipment 10,567
Tethered Satellite -- satellite, tether 1,476
European Retrievable Carrier 9,901
EURECA Support Equipment 414
Evaluation of Oxygen Interaction
with Materials 2,485
Detailed Supplementary Objectives 56
Detailed Test Objectives 42
Total Vehicle at SRB Ignition 4,522,270
Orbiter Landing Weight 208,721
STS-46 Cargo Configuration
STS-46 TRAJECTORY SEQUENCE OF EVENTS
EVENT MET VELOCITY MACH ALTITUDE
(d:h:m:s) (fps) (ft)
Begin Roll Maneuver
00/00:00:10 189 .16 797
End Roll Maneuver
00/00:00:15 325 .29 2,260
SSME Throttle Down to 80%
00/00:00:26 620 .55 6,937
SSME Throttle Down to 67%
00/00:00:53 1,236 1.20 28,748
SSME Throttle Up to 104%
00/00:01:02 1,481 1.52 37,307
Maximum Dynamic Press.
00/00:01:04 1,548 1.61 41,635
00/00:02:04 4,221 4.04 152,519
Main Engine Cutoff (MECO)
00/00:08:29 24,625 22.74 364,351
Zero Thrust 00/00:08:35 24,624 N/A 363,730
ET Separation 00/00:08:48
OMS-2 Burn 00/00:41:24
Apogee, Perigee at MECO: 226 x 32 nautical miles
Apogee, Perigee post-OMS 2: 230 x 230 nautical miles
SPACE SHUTTLE ABORT MODES
Space Shuttle launch abort philosophy aims toward safe and
intact recovery of the flight crew, orbiter and its payload.
Abort modes include:
* Abort-To-Orbit (ATO) -- Partial loss of main engine thrust
late enough to permit reaching a minimal 105-nautical mile orbit
with orbital maneuvering system engines.
* Abort-Once-Around (AOA) -- Earlier main engine shutdown
with the capability to allow one orbit around before landing at
either Edwards Air Force Base, Calif., White Sands Space Harbor,
N.M, or the Shuttle Landing Facility (SLF) at the Kennedy Space
* Trans-Atlantic Abort Landing (TAL) -- Loss of one or more
main engines midway through powered flight would force a landing
at either Banjul, The Gambia; Ben Guerir, Morroco; or Moron,
* Return-To-Launch-Site (RTLS) -- Early shutdown of one or
more engines, without enough energy to reach Ben Guerir, would
result in a pitch around and thrust back toward KSC until within
gliding distance of the SLF.
STS-46 contingency landing sites are Edwards Air Force Base,
the Kennedy Space Center, White Sands Space Harbor, Banjul, Ben
Guerir and Moron.
STS-46 PRE-LAUNCH PROCESSING
KSC's processing team began readying the orbiter Atlantis
for its 12th flight into space following its STS-45 flight which
ended with a landing at KSC on April 2. Atlantis was in the
Orbiter Processing Facility from April 2 to June 4, undergoing
post-flight inspections and pre-flight testing and inspections.
While in the OPF, technicians installed the three main engines.
Engine 2024 is in the No. 1 position, engine 2012 is in the No. 2
position and engine 2028 is in the No. 3 position.
The remote manipulator system was installed on Apr. 28.
Members of the STS-46 flight crew participated in the Crew
Equipment Interface Test on May 16.
Atlantis was towed from the Orbiter Processing Facility
(OPF) on June 4 to the Vehicle Assembly Building where it was
mated to its external tank and solid rocket boosters on the same
day. Rollout to Launch Pad 39-B occurred on June 11, 1992. On
June 15-16, the Terminal Countdown Demonstration Test with the
STS-46 flight crew was conducted.
The Tethered Satellite System (TSS) was processed for flight
in the Operations and Checkout Building high bay and the EURECA
payload was processed at the commercial Astrotech facility in
Titusville, Fla. The two primary payloads were installed in the
payload canister at the Vertical Processing Facility before they
were transferred to the launch pad.
Payload installation into Atlantis' payload bay was
scheduled for late June. Several interface verification tests
were scheduled between the orbiter and the payload elements. A
standard 43-hour launch countdown is scheduled to begin 3 days
prior to launch. During the countdown, the orbiter's fuel cell
storage tanks will be loaded with fuel and oxidizer and all
orbiter systems will be prepared for flight.
About 9 hours before launch, the external tank will be
filled with its flight load of a half million gallons of liquid
oxygen and liquid hydrogen propellants. About 2 and one-half
hours before liftoff, the flight crew will begin taking their
assigned seats in the crew cabin.
Atlantis's end-of-mission landing is planned at Kennedy
Space Center. Several hours after landing, the vehicle will be
towed to the Vehicle Assembly Building for a few weeks until an
OPF bay becomes available. Atlantis will be taken out of flight
status for several months for a planned modification period.
Atlantis' systems will be inspected and improved to bring the
orbiter up to par with the rest of the Shuttle fleet.
Atlantis's next flight, STS-57, is planned next year with
the first flight of the Spacehab payload and the retrieval of the
EURECA payload deployed on the STS-46 mission.
TETHERED SATELLITE SYSTEM (TSS-1)
An exciting new capability for probing the space environment
and conducting experiments will be demonstrated for the first
time when the NASA/Italian Space Agency Tethered Satellite System
(TSS-1) is deployed during the STS-46 Space Shuttle flight. The
reusable Tethered Satellite System is made up of a satellite
attached to the Shuttle orbiter by a super strong cord which will
be reeled into space from the Shuttle's cargo bay. When the
satellite on its cord, or tether, is deployed to about 12 miles
above the orbiter, TSS-1 will be the longest structure ever flown
Operating the tethered system is a bit like trolling for
fish in a lake or the ocean. But the potential "catch" is
valuable data that may yield scientific insights from the vast
sea of space. For the TSS-1 mission, the tether -- which looks
like a 12-mile-long white bootlace -- will have electrically-
conducting metal strands in its core. The conducting tether will
generate electrical currents at a high voltage by the same basic
principle as a standard electrical generator -- by converting
mechanical energy (the Shuttle's more than 17,000- mile-an-hour
orbital motion) into electrical energy by passing a conductor
through a magnetic field (the Earth's magnetic field lines).
TSS-1 scientific instruments, mounted in the Shuttle cargo
bay, the middeck and on the satellite, will allow scientists to
examine the electrodynamics of the conducting tether system, as
well as clarify their understanding of physical processes in the
ionized plasma of the near-Earth space environment.
Once the investigations are concluded, it is planned to reel
the satellite back into the cargo bay and stow it until after the
The TSS-1 mission will be the first step toward several
potential future uses for tethers in space now being evaluated by
scientists and engineers. One possible application is using long
conducting tethers to generate electrical power for Space Station
Freedom or other orbiting bodies. Conversely, by expending
electrical power to reverse the current flow into a tether, the
system can be placed in an "electric motor" mode to generate
thrust for orbit maintenance. Tethers also may be used to raise
or lower spacecraft orbits. This could be achieved by releasing
a tethered body from a primary spacecraft, thereby transferring
momentum (and imparting motion) to the spacecraft. Another
potential application is the creation of artificial gravity by
rotating two or more masses on a tether, much like a set of
Downward deployment (toward Earth) could place a satellite
in regions of the atmosphere that have been difficult to study
because they lie above the range of high-altitude balloons and
below the minimum altitude of free-flying satellites. Deploying
a tethered satellite downward from the Shuttle also could make
possible aerodynamic and wind tunnel type testing in the region
50 to 75 nautical miles above the Earth.
Space-based tethers have been studied theoretically since
early in this century. More recently, the projected performance
of such systems has been modeled extensively on computers. In
1984, the growing interest in tethered system experiments
resulted in the signing of an agreement between NASA and the
Italian Space Agency (Agenzia Spaziale Italiana - ASI) to jointly
pursue the definition and development of a Tethered Satellite
System to fly aboard the Space Shuttle. Scientific investigations
(including hardware experiments) were selected in 1985 in
response to a joint NASA/ASI announcement of opportunity.
The TSS-1 mission will be the first time such a large,
electrodynamic tethered system has ever been flown. In many
respects, the mission is like the first test flight of a new
airplane: the lessons learned will improve both scientific theory
and operations for future tether missions.
The primary objectives of the first tethered satellite
mission are to evaluate the capability to safely deploy, control
and retrieve a tethered satellite, to validate predictions of the
dynamic forces at work in a tethered satellite system and to
conduct exploratory electrodynamic science investigations and
demonstrate the capability of the system to serve as a facility
for research in geophysical and space physics.
Since the dynamics of the Tethered Satellite System are
complex and only can be tested fully in orbit, it is impossible
to predict before the mission exactly how the system will perform
in the space environment. Though tether system dynamics have
been extensively tested and simulated, it could be that actual
dynamics will differ somewhat from predictions. The complexity
of a widely separated, multi-component system and the forces
created by the flow of current through the system are other
variables that will affect the system's performance.
Responsibility for Tethered Satellite System activities
within NASA is divided between the Marshall Space Flight Center,
Huntsville, Ala., and the Johnson Space Center, Houston. Marshall
has the development and integration responsibility. Marshall
also is responsible for developing and executing the TSS-1
science mission, and science teams for each of the 12 experiments
work under that center's direction. During the mission, Johnson
will be responsible for the operation of the TSS-1 payload. This
includes deployment and retrieval of the satellite by the crew as
well as controlling Spacelab pallet, the deployer and the
satellite. Marshall will furnish real-time engineering support
for the TSS-1 system components and tether dynamics. ASI is
furnishing satellite engineering and management support. All
remote commanding of science instruments aboard the satellite and
deployer will be executed by a Marshall payload operations
control cadre stationed at Johnson for the mission.
Tethered Satellite System Hardware
The Tethered Satellite System has five major components: the
deployer system, the tether, the satellite, the carriers on which
the system is mounted and the science instruments. Under the
1984 memorandum of understanding, the Italian Space Agency agreed
to provide the satellite and NASA agreed to furnish the deployer
system and tether. The carriers are specially adapted Spacelab
equipment, and the science instruments were developed by various
universities, government agencies and companies in the United
States and Italy.
TSS-1 hardware rides on two carriers in the Shuttle cargo
bay. The deployer is mounted on a Spacelab Enhanced
Multiplexer-Demultiplexer pallet, a general-purpose unpressurized
platform equipped to provide structural support to the deployer,
as well as temperature control, power distribution and command
and data transmission capabilities. The second carrier is the
Mission Peculiar Equipment Support Structure, an inverted A-frame
truss located immediately aft of the enhanced pallet. The
support structure, also Spacelab- provided, holds science support
equipment and two of the TSS-1 science experiments.
The deployer system includes the structure supporting the
satellite, the deployment boom, which initially lifts the
satellite away from the orbiter, the tether reel, a system that
distributes power to the satellite before deployment and a data
acquisition and control assembly.
Cables woven through the structure provide power and data
links to the satellite until it is readied for release. When the
cables are disconnected after checkout, the satellite operates on
its internal battery power. If the safety of the orbiter becomes
a concern, the tether can be cut and the satellite released or
the satellite and boom jettisoned.
The boom, with the satellite resting atop it, is housed in a
canister in the lower section of the satellite support structure.
As deployment begins, the boom will unfold and extend slowly out
of the turning canister, like a bolt being forced upward by a
rotating nut. As the upward part of the canister rotates,
horizontal cross members (fiberglass battens similar to those
that give strength to sails) are unfolded from their bent-in-half
positions to hold the vertical members (longerons) erect.
Additional strength is provided by diagonal tension cables. The
process is reversed for retrieval. When it is fully extended,
the 40-foot boom resembles a short broadcasting tower.
The tether reel mechanism regulates the tether's length,
tension and rate of deployment -- critical factors for tether
control. Designed to hold up to 68 miles of tether, the reel is
3.3 feet in diameter and 3.9 feet long. The reel is equipped
with a "level-wind" mechanism to assure uniform winding on the
reel, a brake assembly for control of the tether and a drive
motor. The mechanism is capable of letting out the tether at up
to about 10 miles per hour. However, for the TSS- 1 mission, the
tether will be released at a much slower rate, about 2.5 miles
The tether's length and electrical properties affect all
aspects of tethered operations. For the TSS-1 mission, the
tether will be reeled out to an altitude about 12 miles above the
Shuttle, making the TSS-1/orbiter combination 100 times longer
than any previous spacecraft. It will create a large current
system in the ionosphere, similar to natural currents in the
Earth's polar regions associated with the aurora borealis. When
the tether's current is pulsed by electron accelerators, it
becomes the longest and lowest frequency antenna ever placed in
orbit. Also, for the first time, scientists can measure the
level of charge or electric potential acquired by a spacecraft as
a result of its motion through the Earth's magnetic field lines.
All these capabilities are directly related to the structure of
the bootlace-thick tether, a conducting cord designed to anchor a
satellite miles above the orbiter.
The TSS-1 tether is 13.6 miles long. When deployed, it is
expected to develop a 5,000-volt electrical potential and carry a
maximum current of 1 ampere. At its center is the conductor, a
10-strand copper bundle wrapped around a Nomex (nylon fiber)
core. The wire is insulated with a layer of Teflon, then
strength is provided with a layer of braided Kevlar -- a tough,
light synthetic fiber also used for making bulletproof vests. An
outer braid of Nomex protects the tether from atomic oxygen. The
cable is about 0.1 inch in diameter.
Developed by the Italian Space Agency, the spherical
satellite is a little more than 5 feet in diameter and is latched
atop the deployer's satellite support structure. The six latches
are released when boom extension is initiated. After the
satellite is extended some 40 feet above the orbiter atop the
boom, tether unreeling will begin.
The satellite is divided into two hemispheres. The payload
module (the upper half of the sphere opposite the tether) houses
satellite-based science instruments. Support systems for power
distribution, data handling, telemetry and navigational equipment
are housed in the service module or lower half. Eight
aluminum-alloy panels, covered with electrically conductive
paint, developed at the Marshall Space Flight Center, form the
outer skin of the satellite. Doors in the panels provide access
for servicing batteries; windows for sun, Earth and
charged-particle sensors; and connectors for cables from the
A fixed boom for mounting science instruments extends some
39 inches from the equator of the satellite sphere. A short mast
opposite the boom carries an S-band antenna for sending data and
receiving commands. For the TSS-1 mission, the satellite is
outfitted with two additional instrument-mounting booms on
opposite sides of the sphere. The booms may be extended up to 8
feet from the body of the satellite, allowing instruments to
sample the surrounding environment, then be pulled back inside
before the satellite is reeled back to the Shuttle.
Motion of the tethered satellite is controlled by its
auxiliary propulsion module, in conjunction with the deployer's
tether reel and motor. The module also initiates, maintains and
controls satellite spin at up to 0.7 revolution per minute on
command from the Shuttle. One set of thrusters near the tether
attachment can provide extra tension on the tether, another can
be used to reduce or eliminate pendulum-type motions in the
satellite, and a third will be used to spin and de-spin the
satellite. A pressurized tank containing gaseous nitrogen for
the thrusters is located in the center of the sphere.
TETHERED SATELLITE SYSTEM-1 FLIGHT OPERATIONS
The responsibility for flying the tethered satellite,
controlling the stability of the satellite, tether and Atlantis,
lies with the flight controllers in the Mission Control Center at
the Johnson Space Center, Houston.
The primary flight control positions contributing to the
flight of the Tethered Satellite System (TSS) are the Guidance
and Procedures (GPO) area and the Payloads area. GPO officers
will oversee the dynamic phases of deployment and retrieval of
the satellite and are responsible for determining the correct
course of action to manage any tether dynamics. To compute
corrective actions, the GPO officers will combine data from their
workstations with inputs from several investigative teams.
The Payloads area will oversee control of the satellite
systems, the operation of the tether deployer and all other TSS
systems. Payloads also serves as the liaison between Mission
Control Center and the science investigators, sending all real-
time commands for science operations to the satellite. Atlantis'
crew will control the deployer reel and the satellite thrusters
from onboard the spacecraft.
The satellite will be deployed from Atlantis when the cargo
bay is facing away from Earth, with the tail slanted upward and
nose pitched down. A 39-foot long boom, with the satellite at
its end, is raised out of the cargo bay to provide clearance
between the satellite and Shuttle during deploy and retrieval
operations. The orientation of the payload bay will result in
the tethered satellite initially deployed upward but at an angle
of about 40 degrees behind Atlantis' path.
Using the tether reel's electric motors to unwind the
tether, an electric motor at the end of the boom to pull the
tether off of the reel and a thruster on the satellite that
pushes the satellite away from Atlantis, the satellite will be
moved away from the Shuttle. The deploy will begin extremely
slowly, with the satellite, after 1 hour has elapsed since the
tether was first unwound, moving away from Atlantis at about
one-half mile per hour. The initial movement of the satellite
away from the boom will be at less than two-hundredths of 1 mile
per hour. The speed of deploy will continue to increase, peaking
after 1 and a half hours from the initial movement to almost 4
miles per hour.
At this point, when the satellite is slightly less than 1
mile from Atlantis, the rate of deployment will begin slowing
briefly, a maneuver that is planned to reduce the 40-degree angle
to 5 degrees and put the satellite in the same plane almost
directly overhead of Atlantis by the time that about 3 miles of
tether has been unwound.
When the satellite is 3.7 miles from Atlantis, 2 and one-
half hours after the start of deployment, a one-quarter of a
revolution-per-minute spin will be imparted to it via its
attitude control system thrusters. The slight spin is needed for
science operations with the satellite.
After this, the speed of deployment will again be increased
gradually, climbing to a peak separation from Atlantis of almost
5 mph about 4 hours into the deployment when the satellite is
about 9 miles distant. From this point, the speed with which the
tether is fed out will gradually decrease through the rest of the
procedure, coming to a stop almost 5 and half hours after the
initial movement, when the satellite is almost 12.5 miles from
Atlantis. Just prior to the satellite arriving on station at 12.5
miles distant, the quarter-revolution spin will be stopped
briefly to measure tether dynamics and then, a seven-tenths of a
revolution-per- minute spin will be imparted to it. At full
deploy, the tension on the tether or the pull from the satellite
is predicted to be equivalent to about 10 pounds of force.
The tether, in total, is 13.7 miles long, allowing an extra
1.2 miles of spare tether that is not planned to be unwound
during the mission.
Dynamics Functional Objectives
During the deploy of TSS, several tests will be conducted to
explore control and dynamics of a tethered satellite. Models of
deployment have shown that the longer the tether becomes, the
more stable the system becomes. The dynamics and control tests
to be conducted during deploy also will aid in preparing for
retrieval of the satellite and serve to verify the ability to
control the satellite during that operation. During retrieval,
it is expected that the stability of the system will decrease as
the tether is shortened, just opposite the way stability
increased as the tether was lengthened during deploy.
The dynamics tests involve maintaining a constant tension on
the tether and correcting any of several possible disturbances to
it. Possible disturbances include: a bobbing motion, also called
a plumb bob, where the satellite bounces slightly on the tether
causing it to alternately slacken and tighten; a vibration of the
tether, called a libration, resulting in a clock-pendulum type
movement of tether and satellite; a pendulous motion of the
satellite or a rolling and pitching action by the satellite at
the end of the tether; and a lateral string mode disturbance, a
motion where the satellite and Shuttle are stable, but the tether
is moving back and forth in a "skip rope" motion. All of these
disturbances may occur naturally and are not unexpected.
However, some disturbances will be induced intentionally.
The first test objectives will be performed before the
satellite reaches 200 yards from Atlantis and will involve small
firings of Atlantis' steering jets to test the disturbances these
may impart to the tether and satellite. The crew will test three
different methods of damping the libration (clock pendulum)
motion expected to be created in the tether and the pendulous
(rolling and pitching) motion expected in the satellite. First,
using visual contact with the satellite, to manually stabilize it
from onboard the Shuttle by remotely firing TSS's attitude
thrusters. Second, using the telemetry information from the
satellite to manually fire the satellite's attitude thrusters.
Third, using an automatic attitude control system for the
satellite via the Shuttle's flight control computers to
automatically fire the TSS thrusters and stabilize the system.
Another test will be performed when the satellite is about
2.5 miles from Atlantis. Atlantis' autopilot will be adjusted to
allow the Shuttle to wobble by as much as 10 degrees in any
direction before steering jets automatically fire to maintain
Atlantis' orientation. The 10-degree deadband will be used to
judge any disturbances that may be imparted to the satellite if a
looser attitude control is maintained by Atlantis. The standard
deadband, or degree of wobble, set in Shuttle autopilot for the
tethered satellite operations is 2 degrees of wobble. Tests
using the wider deadband will allow the crew and flight
controllers to measure the amount of motion the satellite and
tether impart to Atlantis.
When the satellite is fully deployed and on station at 12.5
miles, Atlantis will perform jet firings to judge disturbances
imparted to the tether and satellite at that distance.
Dampening of the various motions expected to occur in the
tether and satellite will be accomplished while at 12.5 miles
using electrical current flow through the tether. During
retrieval, test objectives will be met using a combination of the
Shuttle's steering jets, a built-in dampening system at the end
of the deploy boom and the satellite's steering jets.
Satellite retrieval will occur more slowly than deployment.
The rate of tether retrieval, the closing rate between Atlantis
and the satellite, will build after 5 hours since first movement
to a peak rate of about 3 miles per hour. At that point, when
the satellite is about 4 and a half miles from Atlantis, the rate
of retrieval will gradually decrease, coming to a halt 10 hours
after start of retrieval operations when the satellite is 1.5
miles from Atlantis.
The satellite will remain at 1.5 miles from Atlantis for
about 5 hours of science operations before the final retrieval
begins. Final retrieval of the satellite is expected to take
about 2 hours. A peak rate of closing between Atlantis and the
satellite of about 1.5 miles per hour will be attained just after
the final retrieval begins, and the closing rate will decrease
gradually through the remainder of the operation. The closing
rate at the time the satellite is docked to the cradle at the end
of the deployer boom is planned to be less than one- tenth of 1
mile per hour.
TSS-1 SCIENCE OPERATIONS
Speeding through the magnetized ionospheric plasma at almost
5 miles per second, a 12-mile-long conducting tethered system
should create a variety of very interesting plasma-
electrodynamic phenomena. These are expected to provide unique
experimental capabilities, including the ability to collect an
electrical charge and drive a large current system within the
ionosphere; generate high voltages (on the order of 5 kilovolts)
across the tether at full deployment; control the satellite's
electrical potential and its plasma sheath (the layer of charged
particles created around the satellite); and generate
low-frequency electrostatic and electromagnetic waves. It is
believed that these capabilities can be used to conduct
controlled experimental studies of phenomena and processes that
occur naturally in plasmas throughout the solar system, including
A necessary first step toward these studies -- and the
primary science goal of the TSS-1 mission -- is to characterize
the electrodynamic behavior of the satellite-tether-orbiter
system. Of particular interest is the interaction of the system
with the charged particles and electric and magnetic fields in
A circuit must be closed to produce an electrical current.
For example, in a simple circuit involving a battery and a light
bulb, current travels down one wire from the battery to the bulb,
through the bulb and back to the battery via another wire
completing the circuit. Only when the the circuit is complete
will the bulb illuminate. The conductive outer skin of the
satellite collects free electrons from the space plasma, and the
induced voltage causes the electrons to flow down the conductive
tether to the Shuttle. Then, they will be ejected back into space
with electron guns.
Scientists expect the electrons to travel along magnetic
field lines in the ionosphere to complete the loop. TSS-1
investigators will use a series of interdependent experiments
conducted with the electron guns and tether current-control
hardware, along with a set of diagnostic instruments, to assess
the nature of the external current loop within the ionosphere and
the processes by which current closure occurs at the satellite
and the orbiter.
The TSS-1 mission is comprised of 11 scientific
investigations selected jointly by NASA and the Italian Space
Agency. In addition, the U.S. Air Force's Phillips Laboratory, by
agreement, is providing an experimental investigation. Seven
investigations provide equipment that either stimulates or
monitors the tether system and its environment. Two
investigations will use ground-based instruments to measure
electromagnetic emissions from the Tethered Satellite System as
it passes overhead, and three investigations were selected to
provide theoretical support in the areas of dynamics and
Most of the TSS-1 experiments require measurements of
essentially the same set of physical parameters, with
instrumentation from each investigation providing different parts
of the total set. While some instruments measure magnetic
fields, others record particle energies and densities, and still
others map electric fields. A complete set of data on plasma and
field conditions is required to provide an accurate understanding
of the space environment and its interaction with the tether
system. TSS-1 science investigations, therefore, are
interdependent. They must share information and operations to
achieve their objectives. In fact, these investigations may be
considered to be different parts of a single complex experiment.
The TSS-1 principal and associate investigators and their
support teams will be located in a special Science Operations
Center at the Mission Control Center in Houston. During the
tethered satellite portion of the STS-46 flight, all 12 team
leaders will be positioned at a conference table in the
operations center. Science data will be available to the entire
group, giving them an integrated "picture" of conditions observed
by all the instruments. Together, they will assess performance
of the experiment objectives. Commands to change any instrument
mode that affects the overall data set must be approved by the
group, because such a change could impact the overall science
return from the mission. Requests for adjustments will be
relayed by the mission scientist, the group's leader, to the
science operations director for implementation.
The primary scientific data will be taken during the
approximately 10.5-hour phase (called "on-station 1") when the
satellite is extended to the maximum distance above the Shuttle.
Secondary science measurements will be taken prior to and during
deployment, during "on-station 1," and as the satellite is reeled
back to the orbiter. However, during the latter phase, satellite
recovery has a higher priority than continued science data
Science activities during the TSS-1 mission will be directed
by the science principal investigator team and implemented by a
payload cadre made up primarily of Marshall Space Flight Center
employees and their contractors. Science support teams for each
of the 12 experiments will monitor the science hardware status.
From the Science Operations Center at Mission Control, the
principal investigator team will be able to evaluate the quality
of data obtained, replan science activities as needed and direct
adjustments to the instruments. The cadre will be led by a
science operations director, who will work closely with the
mission scientist, the mission manager and Mission Control's
payloads officer to coordinate science activities.
During the mission, most activities not carried out by the
crew will be controlled by command sequences, or timeline files,
written prior to the mission and stored in an onboard computer.
For maximum flexibility, however, during all TSS phases,
modifications to these timeline files may be uplinked, or
commands may be sent in real-time from the Science Operations
Center to the on-board instruments.
TSS Deployer Core Equipment and Satellite Core Equipment
Dr. Carlo Bonifazi
Italian Space Agency, Rome, Italy
The Tethered Satellite System Core Equipment controls the
electrical current flowing between the satellite and the orbiter.
It also makes a number of basic electrical and physical
measurements of the system.
Mounted on the aft support structure in the Shuttle cargo
bay, the Deployer Core Equipment features an electron accelerator
with two electron beam emitters that can each eject up to 500
milli-amperes (one-half amp) of current from the system. A
master switch, power distribution and electronic control unit,
and command and data interfaces also are included in the deployer
core package. A voltmeter measures tether potential with respect
to the orbiter structure, and a vacuum gauge measures ambient gas
pressure to prevent operations if pressure conditions might cause
Core equipment located on the satellite itself includes an
accelerometer to measure satellite movements and an ammeter to
measure tether current collected on the skin of the TSS-1
Research on Orbital Plasma Electrodynamics (ROPE)
Dr. Nobie Stone
NASA Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala.
This experiment studies behavior of ambient charged
particles in the ionosphere and ionized neutral particles around
the satellite under a variety of conditions. Comparisons of
readings from its instruments should allow scientists to
determine where the particles come from that make up the tether
current as well as the distribution and flow of charged particles
in the space immediately surrounding the satellite.
The Differential Ion Flux Probe, mounted on the end of the
satellite's fixed boom, measures the energy, temperature, density
and direction of ambient ions that flow around the satellite as
well as neutral particles that have been ionized in its plasma
sheath and accelerated outward by the sheath's electric field.
The Soft Particle Energy Spectrometer is actually five
electrostatic analyzers -- three mounted at different locations
on the surface of the satellite itself, and the other two mounted
with the Differential Ion Flux Probe on the boom. Taken
together, measurements from the two boom-mounted sensors can be
used to determine the electrical potential of the sheath of
ionized plasma surrounding the satellite. The three
satellite-mounted sensors will measure geometric distribution of
the current to the satellite's surface.
Research on Electrodynamic Tether Effects (RETE)
Dr. Marino Dobrowolny
Italian National Research Council, Rome, Italy
This experiment measures the electrical potential in the
plasma sheath around the satellite and identifies waves excited
by the satellite and tether system. The instruments are located
in two canisters at the end of the satellite's extendible booms.
As the satellite spins, the booms are extended, and the sensors
sweep the plasma around the entire circumference of the
spacecraft. To produce a profile of the plasma sheath,
measurements of direct-current potential and electron currents
are made both while the boom is fully extended and as it is being
extended or retracted. The same measurements, taken at a fixed
distance from the spinning satellite, produce a map of the
angular structure of the sheath.
Magnetic Field Experiment for TSS Missions (TEMAG)
Prof. Franco Mariani
Second University of Rome, Italy
The primary goal of this investigation is to map the levels
and fluctuations in magnetic fields around the satellite. Two
magnetometers -- very accurate devices for measuring such fields
-- are located on the fixed boom of the satellite, one at its end
and the other at its midpoint. Comparing measurements from the
two magnetometers allows real- time estimates to be made of
unwanted disturbances to the magnetic fields produced by the
presence of satellite batteries, power systems, gyros, motors,
relays and other magnetic material. After the mission, the
variable effects of switching satellite subsystems on and off, of
thruster firings and of other operations that introduce magnetic
disturbances will be modeled on the ground, so these satellite
effects can be subtracted from measurements of the ambient
magnetic fields in space.
Shuttle Electrodynamic Tether System (SETS)
Dr. Peter Banks
University of Michigan, Ann Arbor
This investigation studies the ability of the tethered
satellite to collect electrons by determining current and voltage
of the tethered system and measuring the resistance to current
flow in the tether itself. It also explores how tether current
can be controlled by the emission of electrons at the orbiter end
of the system and characterizes the charge the orbiter acquires
as the tether system produces power, broadcasts low-frequency
radio waves and creates instabilities in the surrounding plasma.
The hardware is located on the support structure in the
orbiter cargo bay. In addition to three instruments to
characterize the orbiter's charge, the experiment includes a
fast-pulse electron accelerator used to help neutralize the
orbiter's charge. It is located close to the core electron gun
and aligned so beams from both are parallel. The fast-pulse
accelerator acts as a current modulator, emitting electron beams
in recognizable patterns to stimulate wave activity over a wide
range of frequencies. The beams can be pulsed with on/off times
on the order of 100 nanoseconds.
Shuttle Potential and Return Electron Experiment (SPREE)
Dr. Dave Hardy and Capt. Marilyn Oberhardt
Dept. of the Air Force, Phillips Laboratory, Bedford, Mass.
Also located on the support structure, this experiment will
measure populations of charged particles around the orbiter.
Measurements will be made prior to deployment to assess ambient
space conditions as well as during active TSS-1 operations. The
measurements will determine the level of orbiter charging with
respect to the ambient space plasma, characterize the particles
returning to the orbiter as a result of TSS-1 electron beam
ejections and investigate local wave- particle interactions
produced by TSS-1 operations. Such information is important in
determining how the Tethered Satellite System current is
generated, and how it is affected by return currents to the
orbiter. The experiment uses two sets of two nested
electrostatic analyzers each, which rotate at approximately 1
revolution per minute, sampling the electrons and ions in and
around the Shuttle's cargo bay.
Tether Optical Phenomena Experiment (TOP)
Dr. Stephen Mende
Lockheed, Palo Alto Research Laboratory, Palo Alto, Calif.
This experiment uses a hand-held, low-light-level TV camera
system operated by the crew, to provide visual data to allow
scientists to answer a variety of questions about tether dynamics
and optical effects generated by TSS-1. The imaging system will
operate in four configurations: filtered, interferometer,
spectrographic and filtered with a telephoto lens. In
particular, the experiment will image the high voltage plasma
sheath surrounding the satellite when it is reeled back toward
the orbiter near the end of the retrieval stage of the mission.
Investigation of Electromagnetic Emissions for Electrodynamic
Dr. Robert Estes
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, Mass.
Observations at the Earth's Surface of Electromagnetic Emission
by TSS (OESEE)
Dr. Giorgio Tacconi, University of Genoa, Italy
The main goal of these experiments is to determine how well
the Tethered Satellite System can broadcast from space.
Ground-based radio transmissions, especially below 15 kilohertz,
are inefficient since most of the power supplied to the antenna
-- large portions of which are buried -- is absorbed by the
ground. Since the Tethered Satellite System operates in the
ionosphere, it should radiate waves more efficiently.
Magnetometers at several locations in a chain of worldwide
geomagnetic observatories and extremely low-fequency receivers at
the Arecibo Radio Telescope facility, Puerto Rico, and other
sites around the world, will try to measure the emissions
produced and track direction of the waves when electron
accelerators pulse tether current over specific land reference
points. An Italian ocean surface and ocean bottom observational
facility also provides remote measurements for TSS-1 emissions.
The Investigation and Measurement of Dynamic Noise in the TSS
Dr. Gordon Gullahorn
Smithsonian Astrophysical Observatory, Cambridge, Mass.
Theoretical and Experimental Investigation of TSS Dynamics
Prof. Silvio Bergamaschi
Institute of Applied Mechanics, Padua University, Padua, Italy
These two investigations will analyze data from a variety of
instruments to examine Tethered Satellite System dynamics or
oscillations over a wide range of frequencies. Primary
instruments will be accelerometers and gyros on board the
satellite, but tether tension and length measurements and
magnetic field measurements also will be used. The dynamics will
be observed in real-time at the Science Operations Center and
later, subjected to detailed post-flight analysis. Basic
theoretical models and simulations of tether movement will be
verified, extended or corrected as required. Then they can be
used confidently in the design of future systems.
Theory and Modeling in Support of Tethered Satellite Applications
Dr. Adam Drobot
Science Applications International Corp., McLean, Va.
This investigation provides theoretical electro-dynamic
support for the mission. Numerical models were developed of
anticipated current and voltage characteristics, plasma sheaths
around the satellite and the orbiter and of the system's response
to the operation of the electron accelerators. These models tell
investigators monitoring the experiments from the ground what
patterns they should expect to see in the data.
THE TSS-1 TEAM
Within NASA, the Tethered Satellite System program is
directed by the Office of Space Flight and the Office of Space
Science and Applications. The Space Systems Projects Office at
the Marshall Space Flight Center, Huntsville, Ala., has
responsibility for project management and overall systems
engineering. Experiment hardware systems were designed and
developed by the U.S. and Italy. Responsibility for integration
of all hardware, including experiment systems, is assigned to the
project manager at the Marshall center. The Kennedy Space
Center, Florida, is responsible for launch- processing and launch
of the TSS-1 payload. The Johnson Space Center, Houston, has
responsibility for TSS-1/STS integration and mission operations.
R.J. Howard of the Office of Space Science and
Applications, NASA Headquarters, Washington, D.C., is the TSS-1
Science Payload Program Manager. The TSS Program Manager is Tom
Stuart of the Office of Space Flight, NASA Headquarters. Billy
Nunley is NASA Project Manager and TSS-1 Mission Manager at the
Marshall Space Flight Center. Dr. Nobie Stone, also of Marshall,
is the NASA TSS-1 Mission Scientist, the TSS Project Scientist
and Co-chairman of the Investigator Working Group.
For the Italian Space Agency, Dr. Gianfranco Manarini is
Program Manager for TSS-1, while the Program Scientist is Dr. F.
Mariani. Dr. Marino Dobrowolny is the Project Scientist for the
Italian Space Agency, and Co-chairman of the investigator group.
Dr. Maurizio Candidi is the Mission Scientist for the Italian
Martin Marietta, Denver, Colo., developed the tether and
control system deployer for NASA. Alenia in Turin, Italy,
developed the satellite for the Italian Space Agency.
TSS-1 SCIENCE INVESTIGATIONS
Title Institution (Nation)
Research on Electrodynamic
CNR or Italian National
Tether Effects Research Council (Italy)
Research on Orbital Plasma NASA/MSFC (U.S.)
Shuttle Electrodynamic Tether Sys University of
Magnetic Field Experiments Second University of Rome
for TSS Missions (Italy)
Theoretical & Experimental Univ. of Padua (Italy)
Investigation of TSS Dynamics
Theory & Modeling in Support SAIC (U.S.)
of Tethered Satellite
Investigation of Electromagnetic Smithsonian Astrophysical
Emissions for Electrodynamic Observatory (U.S.)
Investigation and Measurement of Smithsonian Astrophysical
Dynamic Noise in TSS Observatory (U.S.)
Observation on Earth's Surface of Univ. of Genoa (Italy)
Electromagnetic Emissions by TSS
Deployer Core Equipment and Satellite ASI (Italy)
Tether Optical Phenomena Experiment Lockheed (U.S.)
Shuttle Potential & Return Dept. of the Air Force
Electron Experiment Phillips Laboratory
EUROPEAN RETRIEVABLE CARRIER (EURECA)
The European Space Agency's (ESA) EURECA will be launched by
the Space Shuttle and deployed at an altitude of 425 km. It will
ascend, using its own propulsion, to its operational orbit of 515
km. After 6 to 9 months in orbit, it will descend to the lower
orbit where it will be retrieved by another orbiter and brought
back to Earth. It will refurbished and equipped for the next
The first mission (EURECA-1) primarily will be devoted to
research in the fields of material and life sciences and
radiobiology, all of which require a controlled microgravity
environment. The selected microgravity experiments will be
carried out in seven facilities. The remaining payload comprises
space science and technology.
During the first mission, EURECA's residual carrier
accelerations will not exceed 10-5g. The platform's altitude and
orbit control system makes use of magnetic torquers augmented by
cold gas thrusters to keep disturbance levels below 0.3 Nm during
the operational phase.
o Launch mass 4491 kg
o Electrical power solar array 5000w
o Continuous power to EURECA experiments 1000w
o Launch configuration dia: 4.5m, length: 2.54m
o Volume 40.3m
o Solar array extended 20m x 3.5
Considerable efforts have been made during the design and
development phases to ensure that EURECA is a "user friendly"
system. As is the case for Spacelab, EURECA has standardized
structural attachments, power and data interfaces. Unlike
Spacelab, however, EURECA has a decentralized payload control
concept. Most of the onboard facilities have their own data
handling device so that investigators can control the internal
operations of their equipment directly. This approach provides
more flexibility as well as economical advantages.
EURECA is directly attached to the Shuttle cargo bay by
means of a three-point latching system. The spacecraft has been
designed with a minimum length and a close-to-optimum
length-to-mass ratio, thus helping to keep down launch and
All EURECA operations will be controlled by ESA's Space
Operations Centre (ESOC) in Darmstadt, Germany. During the
deployment and retrieval operations, ESOC will function as a
Remote Payload Operations Control Centre to NASA's Mission
Control Center, Houston, and the orbiter will be used as a relay
station for all the commands. In case of unexpected
communication gaps during this period, the orbiter crew has a
back-up command capability for essential functions.
Throughout the operational phase, ESOC will control EURECA
through two ground stations at Maspalomas and Korrou. EURECA will
be in contact with its ground stations for a relatively short
period each day. When it is out of contact, or "invisible", its
systems operate with a high degree of autonomy, performing
failure detection, isolation and recovery activities to safeguard
ongoing experimental processes.
An experimental advanced data relay system, the Inter- orbit
Communication package, is included in the first payload. This
package will communicate with the European Olympus Communication
Satellite to demonstrate the possible improvements for future
communications with data relay satellites. As such a system will
significantly enhance realtime data coverage, it is planned for
use on subsequent EURECA missions to provide an operational
service via future European data relay satellites.
EURECA Retrievable Carrier
The EURECA structure is made of high strength carbon-fibre
struts and titanium nadal points joined together to form a
framework of cubic elements. This provides relatively low
thermal distortions, allows high alignment accuracy and simple
analytical verification, and is easy to assemble and maintain.
Larger assemblies are attached to the nadal points. Instruments
weighing less than 100 kg are assembled on standard equipment
support panels similar to those on a Spacelab pallet.
Thermal control for EURECA combines active and passive heat
transfer and radiation systems. Active transfer, required for
payload facilities which generated more heat, is achieve by means
of a freon cooling loop which dissipates the thermal load through
two radiators into space. The passive system makes use of
multilayer insulation blankets combined with electrical heaters.
During nominal operations, the thermal control subsystem rejects
a maximum heat load of about 2300 w.
The electrical power subsystem generates, stores, conditions
and distributes power to all the spacecraft subsystems and to the
payload. The deployable and retracable solar arrays, with a
combined raw power output of some 5000 w together with four 40
amp-hour (Ah) nickel-cadmium batteries, provide the payload with
a continuous power of 1000 w, nominally at 28 volts, with peak
power capabilities of up to 1500 w for several minutes. While
EURECA is in the cargo bay, electric power is provided by the
Shuttle to ensure that mission critical equipment is maintained
within its temperature limits.
Attitude and Orbit Control
A modular attitude and orbit control subsystem (AOCS) is
used for attitude determination and spacecraft orientation and
stabilization during all flight operations and orbit control
manoeuvres. The AOCS has been designed for maximum autonomy. It
will ensure that all mission requirements are met even in case of
severe on-board failures, including non-availability of the
on-board data handling subsystem for up to 48 hours.
An orbit transfer assembly, consisting of two redundant sets
of four thrusters, is used to boost EURECA to its operation
attitude at 515 km and to return it to its retrieval orbit at
about 300 km. The amount of onboard propellant hydrazine is
sufficient for the spacecraft to fly different mission profiles
depending on its nominal mission duration which may be anywhere
between 6 and 9 months.
EURECA is three-axis stabilized by means of a magnetic
torque assembly together with a nitrogen reaction control
assembly (RCA). This specific combination of actuators was
selected because its' control accelerations are well below the
microgravity constraints of the spacecraft. The RCA cold gas
system can be used during deployment and retrieval operations
without creating any hazards for the Shuttle.
Communications and Data Handling
EURECA remote control and autonomous operations are carried
out by means of the data handling subsystem (DHS) supported by
the telemetry and telecommand subsystems which provide the link
to and from the ground segment. Through the DHS, instructions
are stored and executed, telemetry data is stored and
transmitted, and the spacecraft and its payload are controlled
when EURECA is no longer "visible" from the ground station.
Solution Growth Facility (SGF)
Universite Libre de Bruxelles, Brussels, Belgium
The Solution Growth Facility (SGF) is a multi-user facility
dedicated to the growth of monocrystals from solution, consisting
of a set of four reactors and their associated control system.
Three of the reactors will be used for the solution growth
of crystals. These reactors have a central buffer chamber
containing solvent and two reservoirs containing reactant
solutions. The reservoirs are connected to the buffer chamber by
valves which allow the solutions to diffuse into the solvent and
hence, to crystallize.
The fourth reactor is divided into twenty individual sample
tubes which contain different samples of binary organic mixtures
and aqueous electrolyte solutions. This reactor is devoted to
the measurement of the Soret coefficient, that is, the ratio of
thermal to isothermal diffusion coefficient.
The SGF has been developed under ESA contract by Laben and
their subcontractors Contraves and Terma.
Protein Crystallization Facility (PCF)
Chemisches Laboratorium, Universitat Freiburg, Freiburg,
The Protein Crystallization Facility (PCF) is a multi-user
solution growth facility for protein crystallization in space.
The object of the experiments is the growth of single, defect-
free protein crystals of high purity and of a size sufficient to
determine their molecular structure by x-ray diffraction. This
typically requires crystal sizes in the order of a few tenths of
The PCF contains twelve reactor vessels, one for each
experiment. Each reactor, which is provided with an individually
controlled temperature environment, has four chambers -- one
containing the protein, one containing a buffer solution and two
filled with salt solutions. When the reactors have reached their
operating temperatures, one of the salt solution chambers, the
protein chamber and the buffer solution chamber are opened. Salt
molecules diffuse into the buffer chamber causing the protein
solution to crystalize. At the end of the mission the second
salt solution chamber is activated to increase the salt
concentration. This stabilizes the crystals and prevents them
from dissolving when individual temperature control for the
experiments ceases and the reactors are maintained at a common
One particular feature of the PCF is that the
crystallization process can be observed from the ground by means
of a video system.
The PCF has been developed under ESA contract by MBB
Deutsche Aerospace and their subcontractors Officine Galileo and
Exobiology And Radiation Assembly (ERA)
Institut fur Flugmedizin Abt. Biophysik, DLR, Cologne, Germany
The Exobiology and Radiation Assembly (ERA) is a multi- user
life science facility for experiments on the biological effects
of space radiation. Our knowledge of the interaction of cosmic
ray particles with biological matter, the synergism of space
vacuum and solar UV, and the spectral effectiveness of solar UV
on viability should be improved as a result of experiments
carried out in the ERA.
The ERA consists of deployable and fixed experiment trays
and a number of cylindrical stacks, known as Biostacks,
containing biological objects such as spores, seeds or eggs
alternated with radiation and track detectors. An electronic
service module also is included in the facility. The deployable
trays carry biological specimens which are exposed to the
different components of the space radiation environment for
predetermined periods of time. The duration of exposure is
controlled by means of shutters and the type of radiation is
selected by the use of optical bandpass filters.
The ERA has been developed under ESA contract by Sira Ltd..
Multi-Furnace Assembly (MFA)
Ist. di Chimica Fisica Applicata dei Materiali, National Research
Council (CNR), Genova, Italy
The Multi-Furnace Assembly (MFA) is a multi-user facility
dedicated to material science experiments. It is a modular
facility with a set of common system interfaces which
incorporates twelve furnaces of three different types, giving
temperatures of up to 1400xC. Some of the furnaces are provided
by the investigators on the basis of design recommendations made
by ESA. The remainder are derived from furnaces flown on other
missions, including some from sounding rocket flights. These are
being used on EURECA after the necessary modifications and
additional qualification. The experiments are performed
sequentially with only one furnace operating at any one time.
The MFA has been developed under ESA contract by Deutsche
Aerospace, ERNO Raumfahrttechnik and their subcontractors SAAB,
Aeritalia, INTA and Bell Telephone.
Automatic Mirror Furnace (AMF)
Kristallographisches Institut, Universitat Freiburg, Freiburg,
The Automatic Mirror Furnace (AMF) is an optical radiation
furnace designed for the growth of single, uniform crystals from
the liquid or vapor phases, using the traveling heater or
The principal component of the furnace is an ellipsoidal
mirror. The experimental material is placed at the lower ring
focus of the mirror and heated by radiation from a 300 w halogen
lamp positioned at the upper focus. Temperatures of up to 1200xC
can be achieved, depending on the requirements of individual
samples. Seven lamps are available and up to 23 samples can be
processed in the furnace.
As the crystal grows, the sample holder is withdrawn from
the mirror assembly at crystallization speed, typically 2 mm/day,
to keep the growth site aligned with the furnace focus. The
sample also is rotated while in the furnace.
The AMF is the first of a new generation of crystal growth
facilities equipped with sample and lamp exchange mechanisms.
Fully automatic operations can be conducted in space during long
microgravity missions on free flying carriers. During a 6 month
mission, about 20 different crystal growth experiments can be
The AMF has been developed under ESA contract by Dornier
Deutsche Aerospace and their subcontractors Laben, ORS and SEP.
Surface Forces Adhesion Instrument (SFA)
Universita di Milano, Milan, Italy
The Surface Forces Adhesion instrument (SFA) has been
designed to study the dependence of surface forces and interface
energies on physical and chemical-physical parameters such as
surface topography, surface cleanliness, temperature and the
deformation properties of the contacting bodies. The SFA
experiment aims at refining current understanding of
adhesion-related phenomena, such as friction and wear, cold
welding techniques in a microgravity environment and solid body
positioning by means of adhesion.
Very high vacuum dynamic measurements must be performed in
microgravity conditions because of the extreme difficulty
experienced on Earth in controlling the physical parameters
involved. As a typical example, the interface energy of a
metallic sphere of 1 g mass contacting a pane target would be of
the order of 10-3 erg. corresponding to a potential gravitational
energy related to a displacement of 10-5 mm. In the same
experiment performed on the EURECA platform, in a 10 to 100,000
times lower gravity environment, this energy corresponds to a
displacement of 1 mm, thus considerably improving measurements
and reducing error margins.
The SFA instrument has been funded by the Scientific
Committee of the Italian Space Agency (ASI) and developed by the
University of Milan and their subcontractors Centrotechnica,
Control Systems and Rial.
High Precision Thermostat Instrument (HPT)
Ruhr Universitat Bochum, Bochum, Germany
Basic physics phenomena around the critical point of fluids
are not, as yet, fully understood. Measurements in a
microgravity environment, made during the German mission D-1,
seem to be at variance with the expected results. Further
investigations of critical phenomena under microgravity
conditions are of very high scientific value.
The High Precision Thermostat (HPT) is an instrument
designed for long term experiments requiring microgravity
conditions and high precision temperature measurement and
control. Typical experiments are "caloric", "critical point" or
"phase transition" experiments, such as the "Adsorption"
experiment designed for the EURECA mission.
This experiment will study the adsorption of Sulphur
Hexafluoride (SF6), close to its critical point (Tc=45.55xC,
pc=0.737 g/cm3) on graphitised carbon. A new volumetric
technique will be used for the measurements of the adsorption
coefficient at various temperatures along the critical isochore
starting from the reference temperature in the one-phase region
(60x) and approaching the critical temperature. The results will
be compared with 1g measurements and theoretical predictions.
The HPT has been developed under DLR contract by Deutsche
Aerospace ERNO Raumfahrttechnik and their subcontractor Kayser-
Solar Constant And Variability Instrument (SOVA)
IRMB, Brussels, Belgium
The Solar Constant and Variability Instrument (SOVA) is
designed to investigate the solar constant, its variability and
its spectral distribution, and measure:
o fluctuations of the total and spectral solar irradiance
within periods of a few minutes up to several hours and with a
resolution of 10-6 to determine the pressure and gravity modes of
the solar oscillations which carry information on the internal
structure of the sun;
o short term variations of the total and spectral solar
irradiance within time scales ranging from hours to few months
and with a resolution of 10-5 for the study of energy
redistribution in the solar convection zone. These variations
appear to be associated with solar activities (sun spots);
o long term variations of the solar luminosity in the time
scale of years (solar cycles) by measuring the absolute solar
irradiance with an accuracy of better than 0.1 percent and by
comparing it with previous and future measurements on board
Spacelab and other space vehicles. This is of importance for the
understanding of solar cycles and is a basic reference for
The SOVA instrument has been developed by the Institut Royal
Meteorologique de Belgique of Brussels, by the
Physikalisch-Meteorologishces Observatorium World Radiation
Center (PMOD/WRC) Davos and by the Space Science Department (SSD)
of the European Space Agency (ESA-ESTEC), Noordwijk.
Solar Spectrum Instrument (SOSP)
Service d'Aeronomie du CNRS, Verrieres le Buisson, France
The Solar Spectrum Instrument (SOSP) has been designed for
the study of solar physics and the solar-terrestrial relationship
in aeronomy and climatology. It measures the absolute solar
irradiance and its variations in the spectral range from 170 to
3200 nm, with an expected accuracy of 1 percent in the visible
and infrared ranges and 5 percent in the ultraviolet range.
Changes in the solar irradiance mainly relate to the
short-term solar variations that have been observed since 1981 by
the Solar Maximum spacecraft, the variations related to the
27-day solar rotation period and the long-term variations related
to the 11-year sun cycles. While the short term variations can
be measured during one single EURECA flight mission, two or three
missions are needed to assess the long term variations.
SOSP has been developed by the Service d'Aeronomie of the
Centre National de Recherche Scientifique (CNRS), the Institut
d'Aeronomie Spatiale de Belgique (IASB), the Landassternwarte
Koenigstuhl and the Hamburger Sternwarte.
Occultation Radiometer Instrument (ORA)
Belgisch Instituut voor Ruimte Aeronomie (BIRA), Brussels,
The Occultation Radiometer instrument (ORA) is designed to
measure aerosols and trace gas densities in the Earth's
mesosphere and stratosphere. The attenuation of the various
spectral components of the solar radiation as it passes through
the Earth's atmosphere enables vertical abundance profiles for
ozone, nitrogen dioxide, water vapor, carbon dioxide and
background and volcanic aerosols to be determined for altitudes
between 20 and 100 km.
The ORA instrument has been developed by the Institut
d'Aeronomie Spatiale, and the Clarendon Laboratory of the
University of Oxford.
Wide Angle Telescope (WATCH)
Danish Space Research Institute, Lyngby, Denmark
The Wide Angle Telescope (WATCH) is designed to detect
celestial gamma and x-ray sources with photon energies in the
range 5 to 200 keV and determine the position of the source.
The major objective of WATCH is the detection and
localization of gamma-ray bursts and hard x-ray transients.
Persistent x-ray sources also can be observed.
Cosmic gamma-ray bursts are one of the most extreme examples
of the variability of the appearance of the x-ray sky. They rise
and decay within seconds, but during their life they outshine the
combined flux from all other sources of celestial x- and gamma
rays by factors of up to a thousand.
Less conspicuous, but more predictable are the x-ray novae
which flare regularly, typically with intervals of a few years.
In the extragalactic sky, the "active galactic nuclei" show
apparently are random fluctuations in their x-ray luminosity over
periods of days or weeks.
WATCH will detect and locate these events. The data from
the experiment can be used to provide light curves and energy for
the sources. The data also may be searched for regularities in
the time variations related to orbital movement or rotation or
for spectral features that yield information about the source.
Additionally, other, more powerful sky observation instruments
can be alerted to the presence of objects that WATCH has detected
as being in an unusual state of activity.
WATCH has been developed by the Danish Space Research Institute.
Timeband Capture Cell Experiment (TICCE)
Unit for Space Science, Physics Laboratory
University of Kent, Great Britain
The Timeband Capture Cell Experiment (TICCE) is an
instrument designed for the study of the microparticle population
in near-Earth space -- typically Earth debris, meteoroids and
cometary dust. The TICCE will capture micron dimensioned
particles with velocities in excess of 3 km/s and store the
debris for retrieval and post-mission analysis.
Particles detected by the instrument pass through a front
foil and into a debris collection substrate positioned 100 nm
behind the foil. Each perforation in the foil will have a
corresponding debris site on the substrate. The foil will be
moved in 50 discrete steps during the six month mission, and the
phase shift between the debris site and the perforation will
enable the arrival timeband of the particle to be determined.
Between 200 and 300 particles are expected to impact the
instrument during the mission. Ambiguities in the correlation of
foil perforations and debris sites will probably occur for only a
few of the impacts.
Elemental analysis of the impact sites will be performed,
using dispersive x-ray techniques, once the instrument has
returned to Earth.
TICCE has been developed by the University of Kent. Its
structural support has been sponsored by ESA and subcontracted to
SABCA under a Deutsche Aerospace ERNO Raumfahrttechnik contract.
Radio Frequency Ionization Thruster Assembly (RITA)
MBB Deutsche Aerospace, Munich, Germany
The Radio Frequency Ionization Thruster Assembly (RITA) is
designed to evaluate the use of electric propulsion in space and
to gain operational experience before endorsing its use for
advanced spacecraft technologies.
The space missions now being planned - which are both more
complex and of longer duration - call for increased amounts of
propellant for their propulsion systems which, in turn, leads to
an increase in the overall spacecraft mass to the detriment of
the scientific or applications payload. Considerable savings can
be made in this respect by the use of ion propulsion systems,
wherein a gas is ionized and the positive ions are them
accelerated by an electric field. In order to avoid spacecraft
charging, the resulting ion beam is then neutralized by an
electron emitting device, the neutralizer. The exhaust
velocities obtained in this way are about an order of magnitude
higher than those of chemical propulsion systems.
RITA has been developed under ESA and BMFT contract by
Deutsche Aerospace ERNO Raumfahrttechnik.
Inter-Orbit Communication (IOC)
CNES Project Manager, CNES-IOC
ESA Project Manager, ESTEC-CD
Noordwijk, The Netherlands
The Inter-Orbit Communication (IOC) instrument is a
technological experiment designed to provide a pre-operational
inflight test and demonstration of the main functions, services
and equipment typical of those required for a data relay system,
o bi-directional, end-to-end data transmission between the user
spacecraft and a dedicated ground station via a relay satellite
in the 20/30 GHz frequency band;
o tracking of a data relay satellite;
o tracking of a user spacecraft;
o ranging services for orbit determination of a user spacecraft
via a relay satellite.
In this case, the EURECA platform is the user spacecraft and
the ESA communications satellite Olympus the relay satellite.
One of the Olympus steerable spot beam antennas will be pointed
towards the IOC on EURECA and the other towards the IOC ground
station. The IOC instrument is provided with a mobile
directional antenna to track Olympus.
The IOC has been developed under ESA contract by CNES and
their subcontractors Alocatel Espace, Marconi Space Systems,
Laben, Matra Espace, Sener, Alcatel Bel, AEG-Telefunken, ETCA,
TEX, MDS and COMDEV.
Advanced Solar Gallium Arsenide Array (ASGA)
CISE SPA, Segrate, Italy
The Advanced Solar Gallium Arsenide Array (ASGA) will
provide valuable information on the performance of gallium
arsenide (GaAs) solar arrays and on the effects of the low Earth
orbit environment on their components. These solar cells,
already being used in a trial form to power the Soviet MIR space
station, are expected to form the backbone of the next generation
of compact, high power-to-weight ratio European solar energy
The most significant environmental hazards encountered arise
from isotropic proton bombardment in the South Atlantic Anomaly,
high frequency thermal cycling fatigue of solar cell
interconnections and the recently discovered atomic oxygen
erosion of solar array materials. Although a certain amount of
knowledge may be gained from laboratory experiments, the crucial
confirmation of the fidelity of the GaAs solar array designs
awaits the results of flight experiments.
The project has been sponsored by the Italian Space Agency
(ASI) and developed by CISE with its subcontractor, Carlo Gavazzi
Space. The planar solar module has been assembled by FIAR. The
miniature Cassegranian concentrator components have been
developed in collaboration with the Royal Aircraft Establishments
and Pilkington Space Technology.
EURECA has been developed under ESA contract by Deutsche
Aerospace, ERNO Raumfahrttechnik, (Germany), and their
subcontractors Sener, (England), AIT, (Italy), SABCA, (Belgium),
AEG, (Germany), Fokker, (The Netherlands), Matra, (France),
Deutsche Aerospace, ERNO Raumfahrttechnik, (Germany), SNIA-BPD,
(Italy), BTM, (Belgium), and Laben, (Italy).
F. Schwan - Industrial Project Manager
Deutsche Aerospace, ERNO Raumfahrttechnik, Bremen, Germany
W. Nellessen - ESA Project Manager
ESTEC MR, Noordwijk, The Netherlands
EVALUATION OF OXYGEN INTERACTION WITH MATERIALS/TWO PHASE
MOUNTING PLATE EXPERIMENT (EOIM-III/TEMP 2A-3)
The Evaluation of Atomic Oxygen Interactions with Materials
(EOIM) payload will obtain accurate reaction rate measurements of
the interaction of space station materials with atomic oxygen.
It also will measure the local Space Shuttle environment, ambient
atmosphere and interactions between the two. This will improve
the understanding of the effect of the Shuttle environment on
Shuttle and payload operations and will update current models of
atmospheric composition. EOIM also will assess the effects of
environmental and material parameters on reaction rates.
To make these measurements, EOIM will use an ion-neutral
mass spectrometer to obtain aeronomy measurements and to study
atom-surface interaction products. The package also provides a
mass spectrometer rotating carousel system containing RmodeledS
polymers for mechanistic studies. EOIM also will study the
effects of mechanical stress on erosion rates of advanced
composites and the effects of temperature on reaction rates of
disk specimens and thin films. Energy accommodations on surfaces
and surface-atom emission characteristics concerning surface
recession will be measured using passive scatterometers. The
payload also will assess solar ultraviolet radiation reaction
The environment monitor package will be activated pre-
launch, while the remainder of the payload will be activated
after payload bay door opening. Experiment measurements will be
made throughout the flight, and the package will be powered down
during de-orbit preparations.
The Two Phase Mounting Plate Experiment (TEMP 2A-3) has
two-phase mounting plates, an ammonia reservoir, mechanical
pumps, a flowmeter, radiator and valves, and avionics subsystems.
The TEMP is a two-phase thermal control system that utilizes
vaporization to transport large amounts of heat over large
distances. The technology being tested by TEMP is needed to meet
the increased thermal control requirements of space station. The
TEMP experiment will be the first demonstration of a mechanically
pumped two-phase ammonia thermal control system in microgravity.
It also will evaluate a propulsion-type fluid management
reservoir in a two-phase ammonia system, measure pressure drops
in a two-phase fluid line, evaluate the performance of a
two-phase cold plate design and measure heat transfer
coefficients in a two-phase boiler experiment. EOIM-III/TEMP
2A-3 are integrated together on a MPESS payload carrier in the
EOIM 111/TEMP 2A
CONSORTIUM FOR MATERIALS DEVELOPMENT IN SPACE COMPLEX AUTONOMOUS
The Consortium for Materials Development in Space Complex
Autonomous Payload (CONCAP) is sponsored by NASA's Office of
Commercial Programs (OCP). On STS-46, two CONCAP payloads
(CONCAP-II and -III) will be flown in 5-foot cylindrical GAS (Get
Away Special) canisters.
CONCAP-II is designed to study the changes that materials
undergo in low-Earth orbit. This payload involves two types of
experiments to study the surface reactions resulting from
exposing materials to the atomic oxygen flow experienced by the
Space Shuttle in orbit. The atomic oxygen flux level also will
be measured and recorded. The first experiment will expose
different types of high temperature superconducting thin films to
the 5 electron volt atomic oxygen flux to achieve improved
properties. Additional novel aspects of this experiment are that
a subset of the materials samples will be heated to 320 degrees
Celsius (the highest temperature used in space), and that the
material resistance change of 24 samples will be measured
For the second CONCAP-II experiment, the surface of
different passive materials will be exposed (at ambient and
elevated temperatures) to hyperthermal oxygen flow. This
experiment will enable enhanced prediction of materials
degradation on spacecraft and solar power systems. In addition,
this experiment will test oxidation-resistant coatings and the
production of surfaces for commercial use, development of new
materials based on energetic molecular beam processing and
development of an accurate data base on materials reaction rates
CONCAP-III is designed to measure and record absolute
accelerations (microgravity levels) in one experiment and to
electroplate pure nickel metal and record the conditions
(temperature, voltage and current) during this process in another
experiment. Items inside the orbiter experience changes in
acceleration when various forces are applied to the orbiter,
including thruster firing, crew motion and for STS-46, tethered
satellite operations. By measuring absolute accelerations,
CONCAP-III can compare the measured force that the orbiter
undergoes during satellite operations with theoretical
calculations. Also, during accelerations measurements,
CONCAP-III can gather accurate acceleration data during the
The second CONCAP-III experiment is an electroplating
experiment using pure nickel metal. This experiment will obtain
samples for analysis as part of a study of microgravity effects
on electroplating. Materials electroplated in low gravity tend
to have different structures than materials electroplated on
Earth. Electroplating will be performed before and during the
tethered satellite deployment to study the differences that occur
for different levels of accelerations.
The CONCAP-II and -III experiments are managed and developed
by the Consortium for Materials Development in Space, a NASA
Center for the Commercial Development of Space at the University
of Alabama in Huntsville (UAH). Payload integration and flight
hardware management is handled by NASA's Goddard Space Flight
Center, Greenbelt, Md.
Dr. John C. Gregory and Jan A. Bijvoet of UAH are Principal
investigator and payload manager, respectively, for CONCAP-II.
For CONCAP-III, principal investigator for the acceleration
experiment is Bijvoet, principal investigator for the
electrodeposition (electroplating) is Dr. Clyde Riley, also of
UAH, and payload manager is George W. Maybee of McDonnell Douglas
Space Systems Co., Huntsville, Ala.
LIMITED DURATION SPACE ENVIRONMENT CANDIDATE MATERIALS EXPOSURE
The first of the Limited Duration Space Environment
Candidate Materials Exposure (LDCE) payload series is sponsored
by NASA's Office of Commercial Programs (OCP). The LDCE project
on STS-46 represents an opportunity to evaluate candidate space
structure materials in low-Earth orbit.
The objective of the project is to provide engineering and
scientific information to those involved in materials selection
and development for space systems and structures. By exposing
such materials to representative space environments, an
analytical model of the performance of these materials in a space
environment can be obtained.
The LDCE payload consists of three separate experiments,
LDCE-1, -2 and -3, which will examine the reaction of 356
candidate materials to at least 40 hours exposure in low-Earth
orbit. LDCE-1 and -2 will be housed in GAS (Get Away Special)
canisters with motorized door assemblies. LDCE-3 will be located
on the top of the GAS canister used for CONCAP-III. Each
experiment has a 19.65-inch diameter support disc with a
15.34-inch diameter section which contains the candidate
materials. The support disc for LDCE-3 will be continually
exposed during the mission, whereas LDCE-1 and -2 will be exposed
only when the GAS canisters' doors are opened by a crew member.
Other than opening and closing the doors, LDCE payload operations
are completely passive. The doors will be open once the Shuttle
achieves orbit and will be closed periodically during Shuttle
operations, such as water dumps, jet firings and changes in
Two primary commercial goals of the flight project are to
identify environmentally-stable structural materials to support
continued humanization and commercialization of the space
frontier and to establish a technology base to service growing
interest in space materials environmental stability.
The LDCE payload is managed and developed by the Center for
Materials on Space Structures, a NASA Center for the Commercial
Development of Space at Case Western Reserve University (CWRU) in
Cleveland. Dr. John F. Wallace, Director of Space Flight Programs
at CWRU, is lead Investigator. Dawn Davis, also of CWRU, is
PITUITARY GROWTH HORMONE CELL FUNCTION (PHCF)
Dr. W.C. Hymer
The Pennsylvania State University, University Park, Pa.
The Pituitary Growth Hormone Cell Function (PHCF)
experiment is a middeck-locker rodent cell culture experiment.
It continues the study of the influence of microgravity on growth
hormone secreted by cells isolated from the brain's anterior
PHCF is designed to study whether the growth hormone-
producing cells of the pituitary gland have an internal gravity
sensor responsible for the decreased hormone release observed
following space flight. This hormone plays an important role in
muscle metabolism and immune-cell function as well as in the
growth of children. Growth hormone production decreases with
age. The decline is thought to play an important role in the
The decreased production of biologically active growth
hormone seen during space flight could be a factor in the loss of
muscle and bone strength and the decreased immune response
observed in astronauts following space flight. If the two are
linked, PHCF might identify mechanisms for providing
countermeasures for astronauts on long space missions. It also
may lead to increased understanding of the processes underlying
human muscle degeneration as people age on Earth.
The PHCF experiment uses cultures of living rat pituitary
cells. These preparations will be placed in 165 culture vials
carried on the Shuttle's middeck in an incubator. After the
flight, the cells will be cultured and their growth hormone
IMAX CARGO BAY CAMERA (ICBC)
The IMAX Cargo Bay Camera (ICBC) is aboard STS-46 as part of
NASA's continuing collaboration with the Smithsonian Institution
in the production of films using the IMAX system. This system,
developed by IMAX Corp., Toronto, Canada, uses specially-designed
70 mm film cameras and projectors to produce very high definition
motion picture images which, accompanied by six channel high
fidelity sound, are displayed on screens up to ten times the size
used in conventional motion picture theaters.
"The Dream is Alive" and "Blue Planet," earlier products of this
collaboration, have been enjoyed by millions of people around the
world. On this flight, the camera will be used primarily to
cover the EURECA and Tether Satellite operations, plus Earth
scenes as circumstances permit. The footage will be used in a
new film dealing with our use of space to gain new knowledge of
the universe and the future of mankind in space. Production of
these films is sponsored by the Lockheed Corporation.
AIR FORCE MAUI OPTICAL SYSTEM (AMOS)
The Air Force Maui Optical System (AMOS) is an electrical-
optical facility located on the Hawaiian island of Maui. The
facility tracks the orbiter as it flies over the area and records
signatures from thruster firings, water dumps or the phenomena of
shuttle glow, a well-documented glowing effect around the shuttle
caused by the interaction of atomic oxygen with the spacecraft.
The information obtained is used to calibrate the infrared
and optical sensors at the facility. No hardware onboard the
shuttle is needed for the system.
ULTRAVIOLET PLUME EXPERIMENT
The Ultraviolet Plume Experiment (UVPI) is an instrument on
the Low-Power Atmospheric Compensation Experiment (LACE)
satellite launched by the Strategic Defense Initiative
Organization in February 1990. LACE is in a 43-degree
inclination orbit of 290 n.m. Imagery of Columbia's engine
firings or attitude control system firings will be taken on a
non-interference basis by the UVPI whenever an opportunity is
available during the STS-46 mission.
STS-46 CREW BIOGRAPHIES
Loren J. Shriver, 47, Col., USAF, will serve as commander of
STS-46. Selected as an astronaut in January 1978, Shriver
considers Paton, Iowa, his hometown and will be making his third
Shriver graduated from Paton Consolidated High School,
received a bachelor's in aeronautical engineering from the Air
Force Academy and received a master's in aeronautical engineering
from Purdue University.
Shriver was pilot of STS-51C in January 1985, a Department
of Defense-dedicated shuttle flight. He next flew as commander
of STS-31 in April 1990, the mission that deployed the Hubble
Space Telescope. Shriver has logged more than 194 hours in space.
Andrew M. Allen, 36, Major, USMC, will serve as pilot.
Selected as an astronaut in June 1987, Allen was born in
Philadephia, Pa., and will be making his first space flight.
Allen graduated from Archbishop Wood High School in
Warminster, Pa., in 1973 and received a bachelor's in mechanical
engineering from Villanova University in 1977.
Allen was commissioned in the Marine Corps in 1977.
Following flight school, he was assigned to fly the F-4 Phantom
at the Marine Corps Air Station in Beaufort, S.C. He graduated
from the Navy Test Pilot School in 1987 and was a test pilot
under instruction at the time of his selection by NASA. He has
logged more than 3,000 flying hours in more than 30 different
types of aircraft.
Claude Nicollier, 47, will be Mission Specialist 1 (MS1).
Under an agreement between the European Space Agency and NASA, he
was selected as an astronaut in 1980. Nicollier was born in
Vevey, Switzerland, and will be making his first space flight.
Nicollier graduated from Gymnase de Lausanne, Lausanne,
Switzerland, received a bachelor's in physics from the University
of Lausanne and received a master's in astrophysics from the
University of Geneva.
In 1976, he accepted a fellowship at ESA's Space Science
Dept., working as a research scientist in various airborne
infrared astronomy programs. In 1978, he was selected by ESA as
one of three payload specialist candidates for the Spacelab- 1
shuttle mission, training at NASA for 2 years as an alternate.
In 1980, he began mission specialist training. Nicollier
graduated from the Empire Test Pilot School, Boscombe Down,
England, in 1988, and holds a commission as Captain in the Swiss
Air Force. He has logged more than 4,300 hours flying time, 2,700
in jet aircraft.
Marsha S. Ivins, 41, will be Mission Specialist 2 (MS2).
Selected as an astronaut in 1984, Ivins was born in Baltimore,
Md., and will be making her second space flight.
Ivins graduated from Nether Providence High School,
Wallingford, Pa., and received a bachelor's in aerospace
engineering from the University of Colorado.
Ivins joined NASA shortly after graduation and was employed
at the Johnson Space Center as an engineer in the Crew Station
Design Branch until 1980. she was assigned as a flight simulation
engineer aboard the Shuttle Training Aircraft and served as
co-pilot of the NASA administrative aircraft.
She first flew on STS-32 in January 1990, a mission that
retrieved the Long Duration Exposure Facility (LDEF). She has
logged more than 261 hours in space.
Jeffrey A. Hoffman, 47, will be Mission Specialist 3 (MS3)
and serve as Payload Commander. Selected as an astronaut in
January 1978, Hoffman considers Scarsdale, N.Y., his hometown and
will be making his third space flight.
Hoffman graduated from Scarsdale High School, received a
bachelor's in astronomy from Amherst College, received a
doctorate in astrophysics from Harvard University and received a
master's in materials science from Rice University.
Hoffman first flew on STS-51D in April 1985, a mission
during which he performed a spacewalk in an attempt to rescue a
malfunctioning satellite. He next flew on STS-35 in December
1990, a mission carrying the ASTRO-1 astronomy laboratory.
Franklin R. Chang-Diaz will be Mission Specialist 4 (MS4).
Selected as an astronaut in May 1980, Chang-Diaz was born in San
Jose, Costa Rica, and will be making his third space flight.
Chang-Diaz graduated from Colegio De La Salle in San Jose
and from Hartford High School, Hartford, Ct.; received a
bachelor's in mechanical engineering from the University of
Connecticut and received a doctorate in applied physics from the
Massachusetts Institute of Technology.
Chang-Diaz first flew on STS-61C in January 1986, a mission
that deployed the SATCOM KU satellite. He next flew on STS-34 in
October 1989, the mission that deployed the Galileo spacecraft to
explore Jupiter. Chang-Diaz has logged more than 265 hours in
Franco Malerba, 46, will serve as Payload Specialist 1
(PS1). An Italian Space Agency payload specialist candidate,
Malerba was born in Genova, Italy, and will be making his first
Malerba graduated from Maturita classica in 1965, received a
bachelor's degree in electrical engineering from the University
of Genova in 1970 and received a doctorate in physics from the
University of Genova in 1974.
From 1978-1980, he was a staff member of the ESA Space
Science Dept., working on the development and testing of an
experiment in space plasma physics carried aboard the first
shuttle Spacelab flight. From 1980-1989, he has held various
technical and management positions with Digital Equipment Corp.
in Europe, most recently as senior telecommunications consultant
at the European Technical Center in France. Malerba is a founding
member of the Italian Space Society.
MISSION MANAGEMENT FOR STS-46
NASA HEADQUARTERS, WASHINGTON, D.C.
Office of Space Flight
Jeremiah W. Pearson III - Associate Administrator
Brian O'Connor - Deputy Associate Administrator
Tom Utsman - Director, Space Shuttle
Office of Space Science
Dr. Lennard A. Fisk - Associate Administrator,
Office of Space Science and Applications
Alphonso V. Diaz - Deputy Associate Administrator,
Office of Space Science and Applications
George Withbroe - Director, Space Physics Division
R.J. Howard - TSS-1 Science Payload Program Manager
Office of Commercial Programs
John G. Mannix - Assistant Administrator
Richard H. Ott - Director, Commercial Development Division
Garland C. Misener - Chief, Flight Requirements
Ana M. Villamil - Program Manager, Centers for the Commercial
Development of Space
Office of Safety and Mission Quality
Col. Federick Gregory - Associate Administrator
Dr. Charles Pellerin, Jr. - Deputy Associate Administrator
Richard Perry - Director, Programs Assurance
KENNEDY SPACE CENTER, FLA.
Robert L. Crippen - Director
James A. "Gene" Thomas - Deputy Director
Jay F. Honeycutt - Director, Shuttle Management and Operations
Robert B. Sieck - Launch Director
Conrad G. Nagel - Atlantis Flow Director
J. Robert Lang - Director, Vehicle Engineering
Al J. Parrish - Director of Safety Reliability
and Quality Assurance
John T. Conway - Director, Payload Management and Operations
P. Thomas Breakfield - Director, Shuttle Payload Operations
Joanne H. Morgan - Director, Payload Project Management
Robert W. Webster - STS-46 Payload Processing Manager
MARSHALL SPACE FLIGHT CENTER, HUNTSVILLE, ALA.
Thomas J. Lee - Director
Dr. J. Wayne Littles - Deputy Director
Harry G. Craft - Manager, Payload Projects Office
Billy Nunley - TSS-1 Mission Manager
Dr. Nobie Stone - TSS-1 Mission Scientist
Alexander A. McCool - Manager, Shuttle Projects Office
Dr. George McDonough - Director, Science and Engineering
James H. Ehl - Director, Safety and Mission Assurance
Otto Goetz - Manager, Space Shuttle Main Engine Project
Victor Keith Henson - Manager, Redesigned Solid Rocket Motor
Cary H. Rutland - Manager, Solid Rocket Booster Project
Gerald C. Ladner - Manager, External Tank Project
JOHNSON SPACE CENTER, HOUSTON, TEX.
Paul J. Weitz - Director (Acting)
Paul J. Weitz - Deputy Director
Daniel Germany - Manager, Orbiter and GFE Projects
Donald R. Puddy - Director, Flight Crew Operations
Eugene F. Krantz - Director, Mission Operations
Henry O. Pohl - Director, Engineering
Charles S. Harlan - Director, Safety, Reliability and Quality
STENNIS SPACE CENTER, BAY ST. LOUIS, MISS.
Roy S. Estess - Director
Gerald Smith - Deputy Director
J. Harry Guin - Director, Propulsion Test Operations
AMES-DRYDEN FLIGHT RESEARCH FACILITY, EDWARDS, CALIF.
Kenneth J. Szalai - Director
T. G. Ayers - Deputy Director
James R. Phelps - Chief, Space Support Office
AMES RESEARCH CENTER, MOUNTAIN VIEW, CALIF.
Dr. Dale L. Compton Director
Victor L. Peterson Deputy Director
Dr. Steven A. Hawley Associate Director
Dr. Joseph C. Sharp Director, Space Research
Previous Shuttle Missions
Upcoming Shuttle Missions
- END -
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