I’m proud to share that the VIPER team successfully passed the agency’s gate review, permitting the team to fully proceed into building our flight rover! This mandatory review requires flight projects to demonstrate their readiness for integration activites, including having procedures, facilities, and hardware on hand to start the assembly process. This is an especially challenging and important review, given the risk potential to the flight hardware, and passing this review officially moves the VIPER mission from design and verification, into assembly and integration, leading up to launch in late 2024.
The VIPER team prepared for this moment for many months now, getting our new cleanroom up and running, and performance calibration tests in our key facilities, like thermovaccuum chambers, vibration stands, and acoustic facilities – some of which have long histories supporting other NASA missions.
We continue to get every bit of prep-work completed, while we wait for delivery of some critical pieces of hardware. As a result, the VIPER team continues to be agile and responsive to changing conditions, daily.
– Dan Andrews, VIPER Project Manager