Autonomous Transfer Vehicle Tracking Services
On July 30, ITR's ground station successfully tracked the launch of an ATV (Automated Transfer Vehicle) payload aboard an Ariane 5 rocket. This mission by by the European Space Agency (ESA) provides supplies and experiments to the International Space Station.
This was the fifth time ITR has been involved in the ATV mission since the ATV-1 first launched in March 2008. ITR has successfully tracked all five of the Ariane 5 launch vehicles. ITR collected real time data relating to the rocket’s status - both before and after it expressed the main ATV payload. The ATV payload was so heavy that the Ariane 5 required an extra boost stage, and this boost stage has only been able to be ‘seen’ by the Adelaide station based at ITR.
ITR staff engineers Hidayat Soetiyono and Marc Lavenant have been key in the preparation for, and support during, the missions, including the most recent success in July 2014.