The Swedish Prisma formation flying and rendezvous satellites, named Mango and Tango, have now been separated. The satellites have been clamped together since the successful launch in June.
From the mission control center, the SSC engineers report:
"Pass 823 completed. Telemetry indicated that Tango was free flying and had stabilised itself in a slowly rotating sun pointing attitude. Battery was nominal and solar array is working. Everything is fine aboard Tango. The GPS navigation shows that the relative trajectory is nominal: distance had increased to about 120m. The relative velocity at separation was at the right magnitude and the induced momentum was very good. Tango only had to remove a tumbling of about 1 deg/s. We got the first few images down to ground during the first pass after separation. All systems look to be working as expected."
This was only the beginning, now the series of navigation experiments and flight demonstrations can begin. Follow the reporting from SSC's mission control center at http://www.prismasatellites.se/ .
Point of contact:
Staffan Persson, Project manager for Prisma, Swedish Space Corporation, tel. +46 8 627 62 68 , mobile phone +46 70 406 66 61, e-mail: email@example.com, www.ssc.se