Spaceflight Now: Breaking News

NASA's Stardust prepares for space maneuver Tuesday
Posted: Jan. 17, 2000

Artist's concept of NASA's Stardust during its comet rendezvous. Photo: NASA
There were eight Deep Space Network (DSN) tracking passes in the past week with NASA's Stardust probe. Three of the eight passes were designated as "ranging only" passes. That is, no telemetry was downlinked in order that the full carrier signal strength could be used to obtain high resolution ranging data for Navigation. During all passes the subsystems performance remained normal.

The All-Stellar demonstration was repeated with the collection of high rate attitude telemetry. This involved commanding the spacecraft's Star Camera to Track Mode, followed by 1.5 hours in Dual Mode. After the Dual Mode was completed commands were transmitted to place the spacecraft in All-Stellar mode. During the two hours in All-Stellar mode, no multiple thruster firings were observed. Analysis of the data is ongoing.

Preparations for Deep Space Maneuver #1 (DSM-1) are well under way. DSM-1 has a magnitude of 159.8 meters/second (m/s) and will be performed in three equal times of 00:33:36. Part A will be performed on Tuesday, January 18 at 11:00 a.m. PST; Part B on Thursday, January 20 at 6:00 a.m. PST; and Part C on Saturday, January 22 at 10:00 a.m. PST. The spacecraft will be off Sun point and out of contact for approximately 60 minutes for each of the burns.

Ms. Jamalee Stone, a STARDUST Teacher Fellow, was awarded the 1999 Nebraska Christa McAuliffe Teaching Award.

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