TanDEM-X Blog

TanDEM-X will be swallowed by a crocodile

11. June 2010, 11.46, Hermann Berg, 2 Comment/s
As our loyal readers already know, the TanDEM-X satellite is installed in the launcher’s upper stage and ready for transport. The Dnepr rocket is fuelled and waiting in the launch silo a few miles away. But how does the upper stage get to the launcher? Using a special vehicle, naturally.

It has a long cargo area with a hinged lid. The cargo carrier can be moved between the horizontal and vertical. A built-in crane lifts the launcher's upper stage into the transporter. Then, the vertically positioned cargo carrier is hydraulically lowered into the horizontal position. The upper stage then rests securely on a four-axle vehicle of quite some size. Due to its green colour, elongated shape and snout-like cab, it is called the 'Crocodile'.

I have, of course, taken many pictures. However, we have not received approval from Kosmotras for publication, so I can only refer you to other websites. For example, the procedure for CryoSat-2 was identical. More pictures (with German text).

We are allowed to show another crocodile – the mascot that gets excited every morning by the day’s work and is now waiting for a very, very big brother – with eight wheels.


Image: DLR/Astrium.

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  • By Camilla SDO Corona on 11.06.2010
    Ja guten Tag! Hier ist die Camilla Corona und ich bin NASA's Solar Dynamics Observatory's Mascot. How very nice to meet you. What an exciting mission TanDEM-X is. Ich bin ja so imponiert wie das alles so laeuft mit dr Dnepr Rackete. I hope you and your team will have a fantastic launch and great mission and I am sending you all our best! Camilla Corona SDO