December 13, 2013
ESA’s Billion-star Surveyor Gaia Secured Inside Fairing
ESA’s billion-star surveyor Gaia, less than a week from launch, is now tucked up inside the fairing that will protect it during the first few minutes of ascent into space.
After fueling, it was mounted on the Soyuz adapter and added to the Fregat upper stage, which will boost Gaia towards L2.
Meanwhile, the basic assembly of Soyuz – the boosters, core stage and third stage – has been completed in its integration building.
In the coming days, the Soyuz lower stages and the upper assembly containing Gaia will be transported to the launch pad and mated.
Launch is scheduled for 9:12:19 GMT (10:12:19 CET) on 19 December.
On The Net: