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Scientists and payload developers can get more information on International Space Station research facilities by contacting the ISS Payloads Office or at 281-244-6187.

European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF)


Overview | Description | Applications | Operations | Results | Publications | Imagery

Facility Overview

This content was provided by Jan Dettmann, and is maintained in a database by the ISS Program Science Office.

Brief Facility Summary

The European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF) provided power, data, thermal control, and structural support to payloads mounted on the Columbus - External Payload Facility (Columbus-EPF). The facility supported Earth science by exposing materials to the space environment.

Facility Manager(s)

  • Jan Dettmann, European Space Research and Technology Research Centre, Noordwijk, Netherlands
  • Co-Facility Manager(s)

    Information Pending

    Facility Developer(s)

    Carlo Gavazzi Space S.p.A., Milan, , Italy

    Sponsoring Agency

    European Space Agency (ESA)

    Expeditions Assigned


    Previous ISS Missions

    Information Pending

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    Facility Description

    Facility Overview

    • The European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF) provided a platform for several types of experiments or materials to be exposed directly to the space environment.


    The European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF) was mounted outside the Columbus module and carried experiments that required exposure to the space environment. The EuTEF was a programmable, multifunctional architecture that provided uniform interfaces for instruments. Nine instrument modules were accommodated and operated simultaneously.

    The experiments and facility infrastructure were accommodated on the Columbus External Payload Adapter (CEPA), which consisted of an adapter plate, an Active Flight Releasable Attachment Mechanism (A-FRAM), connectors, and a harness. The experiments were mounted directly on the adapter plate or on a support structure that elevated them for optimum exposure in the ram (direction of flight) and zenith directions.

    The total facility mass was about 350 kg and required less than 450 W peak. The first round of experiments for the EuTEF consisted of the following:

    • DEBris In-orbit Evaluator (DEBIE-2): Detected micrometeoroid and orbital debris

    • Dosimetric Telescope (DOSTEL): Measured the radiation environment

    • EuTEF Thermometer (EuTEMP): Measured EuTEF's thermal environment

    • Earth Viewing Camera (EVC): Served as Earth observation camera

    • Exposure Experiment (Expose): Acted as an exobiological exposure facility

    • Flux(Phi) Probe EXperiment (FIPEX): Detected atomic oxygen

    • Material Exposure and Degradation Experiment (MEDET): Examined material degradation

    • Plasma Electron Gun Payload (PLEGPAY): Discharged plasma in orbit

    • An Experiment on Space Tribology Experiment (Tribolab): Served as a testbed for the tribology (study of friction on moving parts) properties of materials

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    Facility Operations

    The Mission 1E crew attached the Columbus module to the International Space Station (ISS) and powered it up. Crewmembers performing an extravehicular activity (EVA) installed EuTEF. Before EuTEF was moved, its stay-alive heaters prepared it for the unpowered 5-hour phase (the battery-powered EuTEMP will monitor the temperatures). A crewmember strapped to the Station's Canadarm 2 released the EuTEF from the Integrated Cargo Carrier by activating the Active Flight Releasable Attachment Mechanism. It was then pulled from its soft-dock magnets and hand-delivered to the Columbus External Payload Facility. Power feed 2 immediately activated to ensure the payload's survival in cold conditions.

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    Results/More Information

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  • Onboard ISS
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    Results Publications

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    Ground Based Results Publications

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    ISS Patents

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    Related Publications

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    Related Websites
  • ESA Human Spaceflight Projects
  • EUTEF Fact Sheet
  • Carlo Gavazzi, EUTEF
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    image European Technology Exposure Facility flight model. Image courtesy of Carlo Gavazzi, S.p.A., Milan, Italy.
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    image European Technology Exposure Facility lighted by the solar beam during the Thermal Balance Test. Image courtesy of ESA.
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    image NASA Images s124e010226 (background) and s123e009654 (foreground): This image shows a close view of the European Space Agency’s European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF) platform located outside of the Columbus module. The EuTEF housed nine experiments from a variety of scientific disciplines.
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    image NASA Image: S123E009654 - Close-up view of European Technology Exposure Facility (EuTEF) Payload on the European Laboratory/Columbus.
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    image NASA Image: ISS020E037329 -
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    Information provided by the investigation team to the ISS Program Scientist's Office.
    If updates are needed to the summary please contact JSC-ISS-Program-Science-Group. For other general questions regarding space station research and technology, please feel free to call our help line at 281-244-6187 or e-mail at JSC-ISS-Payloads-Helpline.