On 20 June, the ATV-2 Johannes Kepler accomplished a textbook undocking from the ISS and then disintegrated as planned 24 hours later in the Earth’s atmosphere.
The Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) is not only a ‘space truck’ supply vehicle and one of Europe’s main contributions to the International Space Station, but could also be the basis of European manned spaceflight.
Manned Space Missions
• Nine reboost manoeuvres put ISS back on course • Airbus Defence and Space already working on next ATV mission • Study: ATV technologies for new space vehicles
Access to space
ESA’s Automated Transfer Vehicle (ATV) may have what appears to be a rather prosaic mission – supply of cargo to the International Space Station (ISS), and removal of rubbish from it, but it is in fact the largest, most complex space vehicle…
The fifth and final European automated transport vehicle (ATV) is ready to set off for Kourou.