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Press & Media

The newsroom provides you with access to up-to-date news and information from Telespazio VEGA Deutschland. You can download our latest Fact Sheets and Case Studies, learn about our presence on events and exhibitions and read our latest news.

For more information please contact our press office.

    •  
      | October 2017 |
      Copernicus - Sentinel-5P satellite launched successfully: Set to monitor the Earth's atmosphere conditions

      Plesetsk Cosmodrome (Russia) - 13/10/2017

      The Sentinel-5P satellite - part of the ESA’s Copernicus Earth observation programme - was launched successfully today at 9:27 GMT (11:27 CET) from the Plesetsk Cosmodrome in Russia, using a Rockot carrier.

      This is the first Copernicus mission dedicated to monitoring the atmosphere. The information gathered by the Sentinel-5P will be used through the Copernicus Atmosphere Monitoring Service to forecast the quality of the air and for decision-making processes.

      The Sentinel-5P will join another five ESA Sentinels put into orbit since 2014.

      Since 2013, Telespazio, along with its subsidiary Telespazio VEGA Deutschland, has played its part in preparing the Sentinel-5P mission as part of the contract awarded to it by the ESOC (ESA’s European Space Operations Centre). Telespazio VEGA Deutschland provided a vast array of services: from operations and engineering, to flight dynamics and ICT (network engineering, IT coordination and data systems).

      Telespazio is one of the leading industrial partners in Copernicus, a programme coordinated and run by the European Commission, in order to provide Europe with its own Earth observation capacity. The Company has been and continues to be involved in the creation, maintenance, and evolution of the Payload Data Ground Segments (PDGS) for Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-3, the Mission Control Systems for Sentinel-1, Sentinel-2, Sentinel-3 and Sentinel-5P and the infrastructure for access to the Earth observation products the Copernicus missions (Copernicus Space Component Data Access – Coordinated Data Access System – CSCDA/CDS).

      Within the Copernicus Operations sector, Telespazio’s staff supports to the ESOC during pre- and post-launch phases for the Sentinel satellites, and is responsible for CSCDA/CDS operations, as well as for acquiring data from the Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 missions, from the e-GEOS Space Centre in Matera. In addition, as the main contractor, it will be responsible for managing the end-to-end service for the operations until 2021, and for maintenance and evolution of the entire earth segment of the Sentinel-3 mission.

      oreover, it supports AIRBUS in its operational activities for the entire earth segment of the Sentinel-1 mission.ithin the Copernicus Operations sector, Telespazio’s staff supports to the ESOC during pre- and post-launch phases for the Sentinel satellites, and is responsible for CSCDA/CDS operations, as well as for acquiring data from the Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 missions, from the e-GEOS Space Centre in Matera. In addition, as the main contractor, it will be responsible for managing the end-to-end service for the operations until 2021, and for maintenance and evolution of the entire earth segment of the Sentinel-3 mission. Moreover, it supports AIRBUS in its operational activities for the entire earth segment of the Sentinel-1 mission.

      In the Copernicus Services sector, Telespazio engages in the activities related to the management of emergencies, land and maritime safety, management of ground resources, and the monitoring climate changes. In fact, the Matera Space Centre is one of three Core Ground Segment stations for the Copernicus programme, and receives radar and optical data acquired by the Sentinel-1 and Sentinel-2 missions.

      Finally, Telespazio provides earth observation data obtained from the COSMO-SkyMed and IRS missions to the Copernicus programme.

      This article was first published on www.telespazio.com

    •  
      | September 2017 |
      Learn to fly a satellite like a pro in the new DLR_School_Lab of the TU Darmstadt

      ​Press release - Darmstadt, 21 September 2017   

      The German aerospace company Telespazio VEGA Deutschland, a subsidiary of Telespazio S.p.A. (Leonardo/Thales), is supporting the new DLR_School_Lab in Darmstadt. The company is providing simulation software that professionals use to learn how to control satellites. This was made possible thanks to a special collaboration with the European Space Operations Centre (ESA/ESOC).

      The School Lab of the TU Darmstadt and the German Aerospace Centre (DLR) was opened on 21 September 2017. There, schoolchildren can discover the world of technology and research through exciting experiments.

      For the focus area “Space”, the Lab has installed a room which resembles ESOC’s Main Control Room – only that no real satellites will be controlled from there. The satellites come into play with Telespazio VEGA Deutschland’s simulation software, the “Spacecraft Operations Training Centre” (STC). At the console however, the schoolchildren will not notice the difference, for the simulation, the satellite’s behaviour is reproduced as realistically as possible. Trajectory calculations, critical manoeuvres and teamwork are as exciting in the Lab as in real-life operations.

      The STC was developed in 2009 by Telespazio VEGA Deutschland in collaboration with ESA to convey spacecraft operations to a young audience, such as students, in a simplified and fun way. Several universities have integrated the STC in their curriculum ever since. Furthermore, the STC is used to teach newcomers and lateral entrants the basics of spacecraft operations before starting to work on real consoles.

      Sigmar Keller, Managing Director of Telespazio VEGA Deutschland, was enthusiastic about the installation at the inauguration event of the DLR_School_Lab: “It is a privilege to support the Lab in our home town Darmstadt. Not only because we are collaborating with our long-standing and much appreciated partners ESOC, DLR and the TU Darmstadt, but also because together we are laying the foundation for inspiring schoolchildren for space.”

      Telespazio VEGA Deutschland has been developing professional simulation software for satellites for many decades, for example for the ESA missions Rosetta or BepiColombo. Quite often, clients also make use of the associated training services: so-called simulation officers create ideal as well as contingency scenarios that can happen during satellite operations. Leading the Flight Control Team through an intense training plan, they always adapt to the particularities of each individual satellite and mission.

      20170921-DLR_School_Lab-30x45cm-JMai_7095 (2400x1600).jpg
      The initiators of the DLR_School_Lab's Satellite Control Room (from right to left, standing): Sigmar Keller, John Lewis, Frank Zimmermann, Stephanie Ueltzhöffer, Marcus Zücker, Reinhold Bertrand. - Photo: Copyright ESA/ Jürgen Mai

      Press contact

      Alexandra Sokolowski

      Tel: +49 (0) 6151 8257-764
      Mobile: +49 (0)162 21 48 175

      PressRelease_DLR School Lab English 2017-09-21.pdfPressRelease_DLR School Lab English 2017-09-21.pdf


      Further Links

      Simulation Solutions | Training Solutions

      DLR_School_Lab Website | ESOC Website | TU Darmstadt Website

      Thumbnail: ESA / J. Mai 

    •  
      | August 2017 |
      Traveling in the footsteps of an astronaut

      An insight into the launch campaign of Paolo Nespoli and Expedition 52 to the International Space Station

      The International Space Station (ISS) has been orbiting our planet for almost 20 years. When astronauts and cosmonauts start their space adventures by leaving Earth on a Soyuz rocket, this is the result of years of work by a large collaboration of international teams from the space agencies ESA, NASA, Roscosmos, JAXA and CSA as well as commercial space companies, such as Telespazio VEGA Deutschland.

      On July 28th, Paolo Nespoli started his 3rd space mission by launching on a Soyuz rocket from the Baikonur Cosmodrome in Kazakhstan. He will spend about 4 months on the International Space Station as a member of Expedition 52/53. The launch campaign preparation started months in advance and it included taking care of all the logistical aspects, the experiments he will perform on orbit, the PR activities both before and during the flight, and of course the visit of family and friends during his last days in Baikonur before the launch.

      Our colleague Serena Bertone has been working for over five years as a Columbus instructor at the European Astronaut Centre (EAC) in Cologne to prepare astronauts and cosmonauts for their missions to the ISS. She also regularly supports real time operations working as Eurocom (European Communicator) within the Columbus Flight Control Team. This summer, Serena had the privilege to be invited to participate in the launch campaign of Paolo Nespoli, Italy’s most experienced astronaut, as family support.

      Read her report:

      “The task of escorting the family and friends of European astronauts to Moscow and Baikonur is shared between the EAC Crew Office and other EAC teams. A member of the Crew Office takes care of the immediate family of the astronaut and a second person, chosen directly by the astronaut and usually of the same nationality, takes care of his friends. During his last trip to Cologne, when I trained him about a new robotics experiment, Paolo offered me the possibility to accompany his friends and to be their guide through all the events of the launch campaign. It goes without saying that I was overjoyed and I immediately said yes!

      After the rush of the last minute preparations for the trip, which had to be accomplished within less than 2 months - instead of the usual 4 months because of a number of delays - I met Paolo’s friends in Moscow. The first guest arrived early on Sunday and we had a chance to explore the Capital with Telespatz, our company mascot, who particularly enjoyed the Bolshoi Theatre in the centre of Moscow.

      P1040500 Moscow Bolshoi Theatre (1024x684) (1024x684).jpg
      On Monday, we travelled together to Star City for a visit of the training facilities of the Gagarin Cosmonaut Training Centre (GCTC), where all the astronauts and cosmonauts receive training before their ISS missions. Families and friends do not have the possibility of visiting the training facilities when the astronaut is in training, so this is their chance to see where the astronaut spends over a year before the flight.

      At GCTC, we visited the Soyuz training facilities, the mock-ups of the Russian ISS modules and the exhibition with many images of Gagarin, the mock-up of the MIR Station and the flown Soyuz 2 capsule. The biggest long arm centrifuge in the world, which is able to spin around four different axes at the same time to simulate the Soyuz re-entry into the atmosphere, was particularly impressive, but not something any of us wished to experience after a meal!

      P1040633 Soyuz taining facility (1024x684).jpgP1040662 Soyuz 2 capsule (1024x684).jpgSoyuz training facilities & Soyuz 2 capsule

      P1040689 - Gagarin Gallery (1024x684).jpgP1040700 Centrifuge (1024x684).jpgGagarin Gallery & Centrifuge

      Paolo’s family and two more of his friends joined us on Monday night. We all met for breakfast on Tuesday morning to introduce ourselves and prepare for the travel to Baikonur. Later in the afternoon, we flew to Baikonur and as soon as we arrived we had our first chance to meet with Paolo and talk to him through the glass, because of the quarantine, bring him the greetings of all the people that couldn’t make it to Kazakhstan and listen to his stories about the last few days in Baikonur.

      The following morning, on Wednesday, we woke up before sunrise and travelled to the Baikonur Cosmodrome for the first time, to see the Soyuz rollout. When the rocket appeared on the train in the distance, everything became real for the first time: we were going to see a real space rocket and we were as excited as kids. The Soyuz arrived on the same launchpad from which Gagarin launched to space in 1961 and was lifted upright in less than two hours, while temperatures started to hike up to the high 30s and the sun shone from a perfectly blue sky.

      P1040856 launcher train (1024x684).jpgP1040904 launch pad (1024x684).jpgSoyuz launcher arriving on a train

      P1040975 Soyuz upright 3 (1024x684).jpgSoyuz lifted upright on the launch pad

      P1050026 Gagarin monument (1024x684).jpgIn the coming days, Paolo’s friends and I braved the sweltering weather to visit the city of Baikonur on foot and discover the many monuments dotting the town, such as the monument to Gagarin.

      The press conference at the Cosmonaut hotel was crowded with journalists, families, friends and tourists. It gave us a chance to listen to the crew describe their expectations for their mission and see their excitement for the upcoming adventure.

      P1050063 Prime crew (1024x684).jpgPrime crew from left: Paolo Nespoli, Sergey Ryazansky and Randy Bresnik and Backup crew Norishige Kanai, Alexander Misurkin and Mark Vande Hei

      After the press conference, friends and families attended the traditional Shashlik party with Paolo and his crew. Although direct physical contact was not allowed by the quarantine doctor, this was possibly the event that Paolo’s friends cherished the most.

      The day of the launch started early in the morning with a quick meeting with NASA and Roscosmos officials, to finalise the preparation activities and with a quick briefing with Paolo’s friends to discuss the events of the day.

      The crew left the Cosmonaut hotel on the traditional Zviosny bus just before 4 pm, cheered on by a large crowd of families, friends, fans and journalists. Next stop: Building 254 in the Baikonur Cosmodrome, where the crew donned the Sokol suits and performed the routine leak checks. We last saw Paolo and his crew in their Sokol suits when they left Building 254, saluted the State Commission and boarded the bus for the trip to the Launchpad.

      P1050253 Building 254 (1024x684).jpg

      P1050289 Buran (1024x684).jpgWhile the crew completed the final checks in the Soyuz, we had dinner at the Seven Winds Hotel inside the Cosmodrome. Later, we visited the Cosmodrome Museum, where we had a chance to take selfies in the cockpit of the Buran and admire the vast collection representing the entire history of Soviet and Russian space flight, from the launch of Sputnik and Laika’s capsule to the current ISS experiments.

       

      The Soyuz of Paolo and Expedition 52 launched at 21.41 Baikonur time, just after sunset, in a perfectly blue and pink sky. We watched the launch with the other families and friends and with the backup crew, which will launch in mid-September as Expedition 53. Being less than 2 km away from the Launchpad gave us a prime view of the launch and we could feel the ground shake below our feet.

      P1050379 Before launch (1024x684).jpg

      The Soyuz ignited and lit up the Launchpad, the four mechanical arms opened and finally the rocket slowly left the ground and shot up into the sky. About two minutes after launch we saw the boosters and fairing separation and we could follow their slow fall to ground as a bright constellation for a long time. About six minutes after launch, we saw the second stage separation and the plume of exhaust becoming wider. After about eight minutes we lost sight of the rocket over the horizon, which by then had reached the eastern part of Russia. After less than nine minutes, the Soyuz achieved a nominal orbital insertion and the crew was in microgravity.

      P1050398 Lift off (1024x684).jpg
      When the Soyuz docked with ISS at 3.55 am Baikonur time, we were all awake and ready to watch and cheer at the Agat Hall, an old Soviet military theatre in the centre of Baikonur. Two hours and many toasts later, at about 6.00 am the Soyuz hatch opened and the new crew was welcomed on ISS by Fyodor Yurchikin, Peggy Whitson and Jack Fischer. As it is traditional, the new crew made their first ground call from the Russian Service Module and talked to their wives, children, parents and friends. Paolo’s friends could not wait to talk to Paolo on space to ground and share their joy of having witnessed such a beautiful launch.

      Five hours later, our plane left Baikonur for Moscow, carrying an exhausted, but happy bunch of space enthusiasts. Paolo’s friends had never met each other nor me beforehand, but after spending such an intense week together and sharing such awesome experiences, it felt as if we were all a big family.“

      More impressions on astronauts, astronaut training and launches? Check out these links

      Training Solutions in Telespazio VEGA

      Theoretically, I could be an astronaut – Interview with Frank Salmen

      How to teach an astronaut to become an astronaut

      EAC Website

      The Launch of Soyuz MS-05

      Vita: Launch, docking & hatch opening

      Paolo Nespoli’s Twitter

      VITA mission on Flickr

       

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