Current Missions

Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV)

ATV approaching ISS,
Artist View

The German Space Operations Center in Oberpfaffenhofen supports with its ground infrastructure the planned ESA ATV-missions. The role of GSOC is to act as data node service provider for the European wide data network. Thus it supports the two main control centers for the ATV-missions in Toulouse and Moscow.

The ATV is equipped with a docking mechanism to dock to the Russian segment. The most important task of the unmanned vehicle is to transport necessary resources like drinking water, food or new science experiments to the ISS. Using its own thrusters the ATV can also be used to realign the station in its orbit.


Launch Date: March 9, 2008 ATV-1 (Jules Verne)
Re-entry: September 29, 2008
Mass: 20t
Dimensions: 9,8 x 4,5m
Launch Site:

Kourou, French-Guyana

Launcher: Ariane V



ATV (Quelle: NASA)

Further ATV missions:

  • ATV-2 (Johannes Kepler) - Launch on February 16, 2011 - Re-entry  on June 21, 2011
  • ATV-3 (Edoardo Amaldi) - Launch date planned: February 29, 2012
  • ATV-4 (Albert Einstein) - Launch date planned: 2013
  • ATV-5 - Launch date planned: 2014

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