ISS:Permanent Multipurpose Module successfully relocated
The Permanent Multipurpose Module (PMM), built by Thales Alenia Space for NASA, has been successfully relocated on the International Space Station (ISS). The relocation entailed the move of PMM from Node 1 to Node 3, the latter also developed by Thales Alenia Space.
The repositioning of the PMM - the Italian Space Agency element derived from the Multipurpose Logistics Module fleet - is just one of the several steps aimed to reconfigure ISS in order to have Node 2 to become the element dedicated to the docking of the next generation crew vehicles, and to have Node 3 as resource management element, not only for Cupola, but also for new elements that will contribute to expand the Space Station in order to validate new technologies for deep space human exploration.
Thales Alenia Space was the prime contractor during the design and development phase of MPLM and since then, jointly with ALTEC, provided sustaining engineering support to NASA for all associated activities. Thales Alenia Space and ALTEC have been extensively involved in the ISS major reconfiguration impacting mainly the Nodes through the contract with the European Space Agency.
All these activities are occurring at the time in which the Italian Astronaut Samantha Cristoforetti is on-board the ISS and she is performing most of the internal reconfiguration of the Nodes.
Luigi Maria Quaglino, Senior Vice President Exploration and Science stated: "The success of this activity is again a source of great pride for Italy, considering the role of Thales Alenia Space in the International Space Station and the operational performances of all our elements since 2001 with the first MPLM. Thanks to the operational performance, the flexibility, the ground and crew capability to perform reconfiguration activities for which these elements were not designed for, the ISS is showing the readiness for new challenging experience for manned environment in LEO and beyond. Thales Alenia Space will further participate in new activities associated to improve ISS capabilities as test-bed for new experiment and exploration".