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  ESA's Rosetta comet probe: Questions, comments

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Author Topic:   ESA's Rosetta comet probe: Questions, comments
Robert Pearlman

Posts: 28620
From: Houston, TX
Registered: Nov 1999

posted 01-21-2014 06:34 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for Robert Pearlman   Click Here to Email Robert Pearlman     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
ESA's Rosetta to Comet 67P: questions, comments

This thread is intended for comments and questions regarding the updates under: ESA's Rosetta probe and lander to Comet 67P.

Rosetta is the first mission designed to orbit and land on a comet. It consists of an orbiter, carrying 11 science experiments, and a lander — called 'Philae' — carrying ten additional instruments, for the most detailed study of a comet ever attempted.


Posts: 1648
From: U.K.
Registered: Jul 2009

posted 01-21-2014 06:38 PM     Click Here to See the Profile for moorouge   Click Here to Email moorouge     Edit/Delete Message   Reply w/Quote
Here is the latest on Rosetta, via ESA's Rosetta Blog -
  • After yesterday's (Jan. 20) spectacular receipt of first signal at 19:18 CET, ending 31 months of hibernation, the team have re-established full control over Rosetta.

  • All basic parameters have been checked out, and it looks like Rosetta came through hibernation fine.

  • For example, the propellant tank temperatures are running now at 7-9 deg C, slightly colder than the 10-15 deg C expected but well within predictions

  • Power levels (i.e. electricity available from the huge solar panels) are fine and substantially similar to the levels prior to hibernation.

  • The solar arrays appear not to have suffered very much degradation if any during 31 months.

  • Team working today to start configuring the solid-state mass memory for use.

  • Next big step will be warming up the reaction wheels and then spinning them up for verification; this will take several days.

  • Acquisition of signal (AOS) yesterday came 18 minutes later than hoped for, but also well within expectations.

  • The slight AOS delay was due to the on-board computer automatically rebooting itself at the beginning of the hibernation exit sequence; the team are looking into this (but Andrea stresses this is not problematic).

  • The team has switched the spacecraft's transmitter to X-band; this means we can now get a decent download rate of about 9 kbps.

  • Tracking has been provided via NASA's Canberra and ESA's New Norcia stations; NASA Goldstone was on call for backup; from now DSN stations will swap roles (Canberra will be on call for back-up).

All times are CT (US)

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