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HEPL Seminar

Next HEPL Seminar: Wed 7 December 2005, 4.15 pm
(Refreshments available at 4pm)
Location HEPL Conference Room

Speaker: Emeline Guiu
Office National d’Etudes et de Recherches Aérospatiales (ONERA)

The MICROSCOPE Mission and In-Flight Calibration
Emeline Guiu, Danya Hudson

Recent developments in fundamental physics have renewed interest in disproving the Equivalence Principle. The MICROSCOPE mission will be the first test to capitalize on the advantages of space to achieve an accuracy of 10 -15, more than two orders of magnitude better than current ground based results. It is a joint CNES, ONERA, and Observatoire de la Côte d’Azur mission in the CNES MYRIADE microsatellite program. The principle of the test is to place two masses of different material on precisely the same orbit and measure any difference in the forces required to maintain the common orbit. The test is performed by a differential electrostatic accelerometer containing two concentric cylindrical test masses. Special attention has been paid to the accelerometric environment of the satellite in order to decrease all the disturbing accelerations. MICROSCOPE is the first satellite with a continuous Drag Free and Attitude Control System and thus does not need an orbit control. The in-orbit calibration, necessary to achieve the target precision, is possible thanks to this system. This presentation will include an overview of the mission, a description of the accelerometer development and the in-flight calibration process.

Emeline Guiu, Danya Hudson
Office National d’Etudes et de Recherches Aérospatiales (ONERA)

29 avenue de la Division Leclerc 92322 CHATILLON CEDEX FRANCE


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