UAF antenna is officially fully operational

On Tuesday, a ribbon cutting ceremony was held at U-A-F for the new antenna that is now, officially, fully operational.
The nine meter wide antenna that was installed on the roof of the Elvey building back in March of 2017 can not only receive satellite data, but can send information to one of the many satellites in polar orbit, a feat that the previous antenna was incapable of doing.
In addition to the two other antennae residing in the forested area west of the Geophysical Institute, the new antenna is also capable of supporting various NASA research missions.
Director of the Alaska Satellite Facility, Nettie LaBelle-Hamer discusses why it took so long to celebrate the new state of the art scientific instrument.
Nettie LaBelle-Hamer; Director, Alaska Satellite Facility>>: "So there's a couple of things that have to happen. So the actual installation of the antenna only takes a couple of days, although its many, many months leading up to those couple of days then we get it physically installed. After we get it physically installed then we have to test out all the figures, the systems, the softwares, and then we have to work with each of the satellites that we'll be in communications with. To make sure we're certified we have to go through a check list, we have to go through a lot of testing to make sure we can talk with each satellite. So that's done in sequential fashion, and it takes several months to become fully certified."