Neptec's Technology Boards Atlantis for 25th NASA Mission - Company helps build International Space Station and keep astronauts safe



    OTTAWA, June 6 /CNW Telbec/ - Neptec Design Group, a leader in
intelligent 3D vision systems for military, manufacturing and aerospace
applications, announced today the STS-117 Atlantis mission marks the
20th flight for its Space Vision System (SVS). Designed to help construct the
International Space Station (ISS), the SVS provides astronauts with position
and attitude cues during assembly. The mission, scheduled for launch on
Friday, June 8th at 7:38 p.m. EDT, also marks the fifth flight for the
company's Laser Camera System (LCS) which is used to perform focused
inspections of any potential damage sites in order to determine if critical
damage has occurred to the shuttle's exterior and to help NASA ensure the
shuttle is safe for re-entry to earth.
    The Space Shuttle Atlantis is set to deliver the second and third
starboard truss segment (S3/S4) to the ISS. The segment weighs 17.5 tons and
will be installed to the starboard side of the ISS using the SVS and the
Canadarm2. The SVS is a docking and assembly system that uses cameras and a
system of black and white dots, known as target arrays, to maneuver and attach
a segment the size of a city bus to the space station. Once the 45-foot
segment is attached to the ISS, the crew will unfold the photo-voltaic solar
arrays which will provide the station with additional power.
    "This flight marks Neptec's 25th mission with NASA over a period of more
than 15 years," said Larisa Beach, VP of Space Robotic Sensors at Neptec. "The
SVS is a great example of Canada's contribution in the building of the
International Space Station and a demonstration of how international partners
can come together to realize a singular vision."
    Since the Return to Flight STS-114 mission in 2005, the LCS has been used
by NASA to scan the exterior of the shuttle for damage to the thermal tiles
that may occur during takeoff. With the ability to detect tiny cracks from up
to four meters away, the LCS can scan the exterior of the shuttle prior to
re-entering the earth's atmosphere. Should a critical area be detected, the
LCS will be used to create a 3D model allowing NASA to determine if the area
needs to be repaired in orbit.
    "We are proud to continue to be part of the Space Shuttle team.
Twenty-five missions is an impressive milestone, we would not have reached it
without the help and support of our many partners including the Canadian Space
Agency," said Iain Christie, President of Neptec. "Our success as a prime
contractor to NASA is the basis on which we are growing and diversifying the
company. The technology that we developed and deployed on the Space Shuttle
has spun off applications in space as well as sectors such as military sensors
and industrial robotics. Helping to keep the shuttle flying safely remains the
core of our business and a continuing source of great pride to everyone at
Neptec."

    About Neptec

    Specializing in intelligent machine vision systems, Neptec maintains a
reputation of quality and reliability in the design, manufacturing,
installation and support of its products with the Space Shuttle, International
Space Station, and other major space programs. With new solutions for the
aerospace and defense industries, Neptec, a NASA prime contractor, continues
to be a pioneer in the innovative use of intelligent 3D machine vision systems
for mission critical applications. For more information please visit
www.neptec.com.




For further information:

For further information: Cerys Goodall, High Road Communications, (613)
688-1184, cgoodall@highroad.com

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