September 1, 2023

Events archive

3-4 November 2014: The third Microscope symposium will take place in ONERA Palaiseau, on 3-4 November 2014.

Its main goal will be to present and discuss the ideas proposed in response to the call issued in July.
More information about the Symposium

03/2014: Satellite Critical Definition Review (CDR) and CGPS and performances key point:

The Steering Committee meeting of 15 May gave the go-ahead to begin satellite AIT (Assembly, Integration and Tests).

10/2013: T-SAGE instrument Critical Definition Review (CDR)

12/2012: System interfaces review

12/2011: Go-ahead for phase C/D

At its 8 December 2011 session, CNES's Board of Directors gave the go-ahead to proceed with the Microscope satellite (phases C, D, E1 of the project).

11/2011: System PDR complement and Mission performance key point

This system review and associated key point brought the expected complements after the satellite review, particularly about the consolidated performance budgets and the capability of the satellite in accomplishing the broadest possible scientific mission in an operational context. The Review Board that met on 12 January 2012 confirmed the project’s readiness to transition to the development phase.

04/2011: Satellite PDR complement with cold gas propulsion

After three years of studies with ESA and specialist micro-propulsion manufacturers, the project has revamped the satellite design to conduct the mission with a nitrogen micro-propulsion system. A Preliminary Definition Review complement was begun on 15 March 2011 and successfully closed out with a Steering Committee meeting on 14 April 2011. Taking into account the satisfactory status of the new definition as well as the cold gas micro-propulsion technology’s maturity, the Steering Committee recommended that the project continue to phase C/D.

06/2008: T-SAGE instrument design Key Point

In June 2008, ONERA and CNES organized a review of the tests results from the engineering model of a complete accelerometer and the vibration model of the mechanical sensor. These results having proved satisfactory, the T-SAGE instrument design is now frozen and the project has been authorized to go ahead to phase C2/D.

The next step is now the qualification of the instrument in flight-representative thermal and mechanical conditions, and then functional tests in free fall.

05/2008: Technological consolidation

The Microscope project Steering Committee, composed of representatives from CNES, ESA, ONERA, OCA, ZARM and DLR, met on 30 May 2008 in Paris. It called on the project to pursue technological consolidation of its microthrusters. Considering the unexpected delay in the FEEP technology’s development, it cleared the project to start a new preliminary design phase (phase B) with another technology: cold gas microthrusters. This phase B will run from mid-2008 to mid-2009.

01/2007: Interview of Serge Reynaud, chair of the CNES fundamental physics expert group (in French)

02/2006: Satellite and system Preliminary Definition Review

12/2005: Conference / Debate "La gravitation à l'épreuve de l'espace", at 8 p.m. in the CNRS auditorium.

What is the universality of the free fall, the concept at the core of gravitation theory? How did Galileo, Newton and Einstein contribute to this concept? Where is current research headed? How and why, from 2009, will the Microscope satellite open up new prospects? All of these topics and more will be discussed by research scientists and engineers from CNRS, ONERA and CNES answering questions from France Inter radio journalist Fabienne Chauvière and the public.

12/2005: T-SAGE Accelerometer Instrument Preliminary Design Review

06/2005: Electric Propulsion Sub-System (EPS) Preliminary Design Review

06/24/2004: Go-ahead to start the project from the CNES Board of Directors

06/17/2004: System Key Point at CNES

11/25/2003: System Preliminary Requirements Review at CNES in Toulouse.