Artist impression of ESEO flying over Europe – credit ESA
On Monday, December 3, 2018, the 50 kg ESA Education Office satellite ESEO was launched by Space-X on the Spaceflight SSO-A SmallSat Express mission.
Following the launch from Space Launch Complex 4E (SLC-4E) at Vandenberg Air Force Base, ESEO separated from the launch vehicle and automatically activated the periodic transmission of its telemetry beacon. However, by the time out of a predefined period, having not received commands from the ground station, the spacecraft automatically entered into safe mode.
Some initial communications issues were experienced by ESEO in receiving commands from the ground stations in Forli’ (Italy) and Vigo (Spain), but they were resolved when the ESEO team of the Observatory of Tartu offered the possibility to use a ground station in Estonia. This is capable of transmitting with higher power, for a temporary contingent use. The Estonian ground station has been configured to be operated remotely by the ESEO MCC team, which involves students of the University of Bologna.
ESEO then started executing the commands transmitted from ground.
ESEO has now completed the LEOPS (Launch and Early OPerationS) phase of its mission, reaching the platform nominal mode and has begun ...