Newry Company provides testing for launch of James Webb Telescope

Peter Bayne

Reporter:

Peter Bayne

Email:

peter.bayne@newrydemocrat.com

Wednesday 5 January 2022 10:07

NEWRY company, Resonate Testing, the leading commercial test house on the island of Ireland, conducted high level vibration and SRS shock testing on equipment that was used as part of the successful launch of the James Webb telescope on Christmas Day.

The telescope, the largest, most powerful and complex telescope ever built, has been described as a “time machine” by scientists and will allow astronomers to study the beginning of the universe shortly after the big bang, 13.8 billion years ago, as well as hunting for signs of life-supporting planets in our own galaxy.

Resonate Testing worked with Dublin based Réaltra Space Systems Engineering, which played a critical role in the launch by providing video images of the separation of the fairings (equipment used to protect the spacecraft during launch), and the spacecraft from the rocket.

Réaltra Space Systems ensured that all products underwent a rigorous “qualification” test campaign, which validated that the design could survive the harsh environments of the launch and space with sufficient margin. The process included extensive testing by Resonate Testing’s experienced and knowledgeable team to ensure the tests were completed to the required space industry standards.

Speaking about the launch of the most ambitious robot probe ever built, the $10bn James Webb telescope, which was blasted into space on top of a giant European rocket, Managing Director of Resonate Testing, Tom Mallon, said “Christmas was extra special this year. As a company we were extremely proud to have played a part in the successful launch of the huge Ariane 5 launcher and the James Webb telescope from the European Space Agency’s station in French Guiana.

“We have been working with Realtra Space for some time, and in recent years we have been competing on a global level by exploiting key upstream resources and developing world-class space downstream capabilities.”

Resonate Testing operates from its Centre of Excellence for Space in Newry and provides a range of testing processes across many sectors. The company has seen an increasing number of tests within the Space Sector, which can be attributed to its ability to rapidly develop and approve new capabilities, following requests from customers – not just in the space sector, but across the many industries that they service. This demonstrates Resonate Testing’s exceptional engineering services as a tried and tested facilitator.

In 2020, the company was awarded Platinum in the Innovate NI Innovation Accreditation programme for its cutting-edge processes that seen the delivery of high-quality live stream testing to global customers, including Réaltra, throughout the global pandemic.

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