Launching satellites from Space Station – step one

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ESA astronaut Thomas Pesquet working in the Kibo laboratory to prepare a CubeSat launch – at 30 times increased speed.

The cylinder in the back is the mini-airlock that allows objects to be sent outside the Space Station. First Thomas and NASA astronaut Shane Kimbrough retrieved the Robotics External Leak Locator and wrapped it up for storage.

Afterwards Thomas installs the platform that the robotic arm grabs. The pointy bit is the connector for the robotic arm.
This video was recorded in December 2016 and was the first step for launching the CubeSats on 16 January 2017. Later Thomas put the satellite launcher on the platform and a third step is to connect the satellites themselves.

Thomas is spending six months on the International Space Station as part of his Proxima mission. During Proxima, Thomas will perform around 50 scientific experiments for ESA and France’s space agency CNES as well as take part in many research activities for the other Station partners. The mission is part of ESA’s vision to use Earth-orbiting spacecraft as a place to live and work for the benefit of European society while using the experience to prepare for future voyages of exploration further into the Solar System.

Connect with Thomas Pesquet: http://thomaspesquet.esa.int

Music: Dynamic Systems – Gledden / Pedder

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11 Comments

  1. What I find most interesting about this video is how this dear astronaut seems to have a "favourite" orientation. As if he was actually standing (without somehow falling on his nose all the time). Do astronauts in the space station have an idea of "this side is up, this is bottom", or is this just a coincidence as most tools he needs in this video are oriented this way?

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