On Monday, October 17, 2011 at 14:36 in the laboratory of the Space Research Centre PAS two gentle clicks were heard. Faces of the PW-Sat project engineers revealed gladness. After years of development, months of construction and weeks of testing, an important phase of the project was finally completed – the satellite was ready to leave the Polish laboratories and begin the journey to the spaceport in French Guiana. Two clicks of latches meant a successful closing of a special box in which PW-Sat will travel now.
Late in the afternoon the box was already on board a train heading to Amsterdam. From there it will go to ESTEC (European Space Research and Technology Centre), the major technology center of the European Space Agency, located in Noordwijk (Netherlands). ESTEC is the first stop for the PW-Sat on its way to South America. Almost every element of satellites and spacecraft built by ESA passes through ESTEC’s labs. PW-Sat – to be launched on ESA’s rocket – is not an exception and will spent next few weeks in ESTEC together with other CubeSats prepared for Vega’s mission.