Satellite TSX-5 Modal Survey

Navcon Engineering was contracted to conduct the TSX-5 Satellite Ground Vibration Test (GVT) including a Linearity Study, a Frequency Response Survey, a Modal Survey, a Transmissibility Test and a Pyrotechnic Test. 


The Tri Service Experiment mission 5, TSX-5, is a descendant of the Space Test Experiment Platform (STEP) common spacecraft bus, whose program missions included STEP-0, STEP-1, STEP-2, STEP-3, and STEP-4. The all aluminum structure consists of a honeycomb core plate with sheet metal panels mounted to milled longerons or stringrers. The 0.82 m (32.40 inch) long STRV-2 payload is mounted to the top of the spacecraft structure.


The photograph shows the modal test of TSX-5 with a STRV-2 Mass Simulator (yellow plate and aluminum disk). The modal test results (damped natural frequencies & mode shapes) were used to dynamically tune the TSX-5 finite element model. The mass simulator was used in place of the STRV-2 to reduce the complexity of the overall model.

The TSX-5 was excited using an APS long stroke electro-dynamic shaker, Model 113. The data was acquired using a HP 3566A multi-channel data acquisition system.


The photograph shows the modal test of TSX-5 with the STRV-2 & CEASE experiments. The test results were used for the tuning of the TSX-5 finite element model.

STRV-2 is a multi-national, highly integrated suite of experiments designed to push the envelope of space based imaging technology, satellite vibration suppression, and material science. STRV-2 is sponsored by the Ballistic Missile Defense Organization CEASE is an environmental scanner, providing the Spacecraft with essential knowledge about its surrounding space.

CEASE will use this flight to prove its near spacecraft environmental assessment capabilities. CEASE is sponsored by Phillips Laboratory Geophysics Laboratory (PL/GPSP).

The Pyrotechnic Shock Test was conducted to determine the shock response spectra (SRS) during the initiation of the separation system V-band. SRS were measured/computed on the face of the CEASE Payload and the bottom deck of the STRV-2 Module. The shock data was acquired using a multi-channel HP 3566A Dynamic Signal Analyzer and PCB Piezotronics shock accelerometers. The SRS were calculated using Navcon's SRS software.