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Data Logger for monitoring the cargo compartment

Source: MSR (

Internationale Raumstation ISS, Bildquelle: DVIDS,, NASA

A two-stage launch rocket of the type “Antares” took the unmanned spacecraft from Orbital 2013 into space for its first test mission. On board the Cygnus were not only cargo such as consumables (food, clothing, science support, medical supplies, space operations support, periodic maintenance items, etc.), as well as spare parts, crew support, and science facilities, but also 10 MSR165 data loggers equipped with 3-axis acceleration sensors from Swiss technology company MSR Electronics GmbH. The aim of the measurements was to record the data for shocks and vibrations during the entire transport route as some of the cargo is particularly sensitive in reacting to stress, especially during the start of the launch rocket. MSR165 data loggers with their highly sensitive sensors are especially suitable for use in spacecrafts, because they can autonomously carry out and store precise measurements for long periods and also because they are very light and small in size.

For the Orbital-2 mission, the MSR data loggers were again programmed to detect and record spacecraft acceleration’s during launch and during all flight events up to berth with the International Space Station on-orbit. On orbit, the data loggers were retrieved from the module by the ISS crew as cargo is unloaded, as the ISS Cargo Integration and Operations Services Manager explains: ‘The data loggers are bagged for storage on-orbit. If the crew has time, the micro memory cards are removed from the loggers and the data files are down-loaded to a Personal Computer onboard and then transmitted to the ground. If the crew does not have the time available – which hasn’t happened yet – the units can be returned to the ground on an ISS return mission and shipped back to Orbital to read out the data. Orbital takes the data, compares it against models and mission specific predictions and then submits an analysis of the loads seen by the cargo during the cargo delivery mission to NASA as proof that the systems operated as advertised’.

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