On Monday, September 17, the European Space Agency (ESA) will launch its Meteosat Second Generation-3 (MSG-3) weather satellite, aboard a Russian-built Soyuz rocket. Officials with the agency say that the spacecraft has now been encapsulated in its payload fairing.
The maneuver was completed in a building at the Baikonur Cosmodrome, in Kazakhstan, where the new satellite will launch from. The image above is the last one taken of the satellite before the process was completed.
According to ESA, the 4-ton spacecraft spent the last 6 weeks subjected to a wide variety of tests and assessments, meant to determine whether or not it will survive an ascent to orbit, and extended operations at this location.
Launch is currently scheduled to occur at 1628 GMT (18:28 CEST) on Monday.