Shipping Bridget To Tenerife

Wednesday 7th September 2011 - 09:00

So here we go - Bridget is leaving for Tenerife TODAY. Right now she is in pieces ready to be packed. We have removed wheels and the suspension bogies. The mast, batteries, control laptop and most of the electronics have been removed ready for packing and shipping. We are taking lots of support equipment with us, from screwdrivers to fuses, power adaptors and  walkie-talkies. We are even taking a vacuum cleaner to clean the rover, especially its electronics parts and connectors at the end of each day. That may surprise you, but sand and fine dust from the El Teide volcano  gets everywhere and can prevent things from. Here's our shipper Graham Hewitt starting to pack the main crate carrying Bridget - you can see the chassis frame with power and control box being secured to the hold down points.  The total shipment weighed almost a tonne in the end!

The last few days have been quite hectic. Bridget has undergone a refurbishment that included the redesign of the Power and Control equipments that deliver power to wheel motors, control computers and on-board payload. This helps prevent damage to the wiring through general use and some of the hard knocks Bridget may get in the field. All switching and charging controls have been placed at the rear of the new Power and Control Module so that they are easily accessible. Voltage meters have been fitted for all the batteries, including the two new batteries that will run the payload equipment. Two additional connectors have been added to the front panel to allow the use of external 12V supplied (batteries) during the field operations to prolong the charge of on-board batteries. And the list goes on...

The time for changes here in Stevenage is over now though. Graham has already put all the parts of Bridget inside the box (he was on the process of doing it when I took the picture) and now she is going.

Bridget is due to be shipped to Tenerife during the week of 5th - 10th of September.  She will be transported by lorry to the airport and flown to Tenerife on a cargo plane as she was in 2006.  In Tenerife, once through customs she will be transported up to the El Teide National Park for re-assembly and checkout before the Trials begin.

See you soon, Bridget! ...and hopefully all of you visitors to the website!