The integrated CHEOPS flight hardware
The integrated CHEOPS science instrument and spacecraft platform in the cleanroom of Airbus Defence and Space Spain in Madrid. During the latest system validation test, the science instrument was controlled by an activity plan sent from the Science Operations Centre (SOC) in Geneva.
In this image, the protective plastic cover atop the spacecraft has been lifted to reveal one side of the science instrument and one of the star trackers (with a red cap). The thin, blue tube, seen rising from the bottom of the image and curving up to the top of the spacecraft, carries a steady stream of nitrogen gas that keeps the science instrument at a slightly higher pressure than the rest of the cleanroom, so that no dust can enter and contaminate the optical elements.