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Matt Wallace
Assembly, Test, and Launch Operations (ATLO) Manager
Mars Exploration Rovers mission
NASA / Jet Propulsion Laboratory
Pasadena, California

"ATLO Day 1, March 1 2001"

P2K: Tell us what has to happen in your area in the next couple of months, what's the schedule of events?

Matt Wallace: In the next couple months we're primarily focused on getting the hardware electrically integrated. The subsystem avionics, the power subsystem, the telecommunications subsystems, thermal subsystems, they're going to be bringing their hardware down. Before we really have the spacecraft structure to bolt it on to, we're going to electrically connect these pieces together with cables, flight cables and test cables and electrical ground support equipment and that sort of thing.

The real focus for the next few months is to make sure that the electrical interfaces "play" together, that they were designed properly, and when we plug them together that they do what we want them to do, the boxes are talking to each other and the power is going where it's supposed to go, and that we can talk to the spacecraft and it can talk to us. So that's really the short term focus. And eventually then the structure will start to come down and we'll start to mechanically assemble the spacecraft.

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