Lowering the Herschel spacecraft onto the Ariane 5 ECA launcher
The Herschel spacecraft is lowered into place on top of the SYLDA 5 support structure at the top of the Ariane 5 ECA launcher inside the final assembly building (Bâtiment d'Assemblage Final, or BAF).
The top of the SYLDA 5 is open through which the top 25 centimetres of the Planck spacecraft protrude. This part of the Planck spacecraft will be enclosed in the space just under the Herschel spacecraft, inside the about 0.33m-high launcher adapter ring that is connected to the base of the Herschel spacecraft.
In this image the top of the Planck telescope is visible. The remainder of the SYLDA 5 support structure is hidden from view by the movable access platform that surrounds it at the top.