Subscribe free to our newsletters via your
. 24/7 Space News .




OUTER PLANETS
Course Correction Keeps New Horizons On Path To Pluto
by Staff Writers
Baltimore MD (SPX) Jul 02, 2010


New Horizons operations center.

A short but important course-correction maneuver kept New Horizons on track to reach the "aim point" for its 2015 encounter with Pluto.

The deep-space equivalent of a tap on the gas pedal, the June 30 thruster-firing lasted 35.6 seconds and sped New Horizons up by just about one mile per hour.

But it was enough to make sure that New Horizons will make its planned closest approach 7,767 miles (12,500 kilometers) above Pluto at 7:49 a.m. EDT on July 14, 2015.

Commands for the preprogrammed maneuver were transmitted to the spacecraft's computers on June 24; the burn went off as planned Wednesday at 3 p.m. EDT. New Horizons was more than 1.49 billion miles (2.4 billion kilometers) from Earth at the time of the maneuver; at that distance, nearing the orbit of Uranus, a radio signal from the spacecraft needs more than 2 hours, 13 minutes to reach Earth.

Mission operators at the Johns Hopkins University Applied Physics Laboratory in Laurel, Md., received confirmation of the successful firing through NASA's Deep Space Network antenna station near Madrid, Spain.

Reflections: What "pushed" New Horizons slightly off course? According to mission navigation team members from KinetX, Inc., it was a tiny amount of force created from thermal photons from New Horizons' radioisotope thermoelectric generator (RTG) power source - reflecting off the backside of the spacecraft's high-gain antenna.

Did you know: The New Horizons propulsion system uses hydrazine, an efficient "monopropellant" fuel used on many satellites. (Monopropellant means the fuel burns without the help of a separate oxidizer.) For extra efficiency the fuel on New Horizons is heated before it's burned.

This was the fourth trajectory correction maneuver, or "TCM," since New Horizons launched on January 19, 2006.

.


Related Links
New Horizons
The million outer planets of a star called Sol






Comment on this article via your Facebook, Yahoo, AOL, Hotmail login.

Share this article via these popular social media networks
del.icio.usdel.icio.us DiggDigg RedditReddit GoogleGoogle




Memory Foam Mattress Review
Newsletters :: SpaceDaily :: SpaceWar :: TerraDaily :: Energy Daily
XML Feeds :: Space News :: Earth News :: War News :: Solar Energy News





OUTER PLANETS
System Tests, Science Observations And A Course Correction
Baltimore MD (SPX) Jun 18, 2010
New Horizons' fourth annual checkout is nearing its mid-point, and continues with a workout for the spacecraft systems, cameras and other instruments that will deliver the first data from Pluto and its moons. Preparations for a small but necessary course-correction maneuver are also on track. Since "ACO-4" began on May 25, mission operators have uploaded new software for New Horizons' on-b ... read more


OUTER PLANETS
Building A Better Robot Arm For Lunar Rovers

The Earth From The Moon

Moon Whets Appetite For Water

Water Content Of Moon's Interior Underestimated

OUTER PLANETS
Opportunity To See More Detail At Crater Destination

Spirit Standing By At Troy

Rocky Mounds And A Plateau On Mars

NASA Instrument Will Identify Clues To Martian Past

OUTER PLANETS
New U.S. space policy sets global agenda

Voyager 2 At 12,000 Days

NASA And International Space Agencies Meet To Discuss Human And Robotic Space Exploration

NASA Plays Key Exploration Role In New Administration Space Policy

OUTER PLANETS
China Sends Research Satellite Into Space

China eyes Argentina for space antenna

Seven More For Shenzhou

China Signs Up First Female Astronauts

OUTER PLANETS
Russian cargo ship fails to dock with ISS

Russian Space Freighter Blasts Off To ISS

Soyuz spacecraft redocks on ISS: report

Space station crew to re-position Soyuz

OUTER PLANETS
Orbital Rockets Selected To Launch Two NASA Scientific Satellites

Arianespace To Launch Argentine Satellite Arsat-1

Six Astrium Satellites Launched In A Month

Ariane rocket places two satellites into orbit

OUTER PLANETS
First Directly Imaged Planet Confirmed Around Sun-Like Star

VLT Detects First Superstorm On Exoplanet

Earth-Like Planets May Be Ready For Their Close-Up

Plentiful And Potential Planets

OUTER PLANETS
Apple hit with lawsuit over iPhone 4 antenna woes

New Multi-Year LTA With EADS Astrium To Power All GEO Satellites

Google News revamped to get more personal

Ball Aerospace Begins Integration Of CrlS Instrument For NPP Weather Satellite




The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2014 - Space Media Network. AFP, UPI and IANS news wire stories are copyright Agence France-Presse, United Press International and Indo-Asia News Service. ESA Portal Reports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additional copyrights may apply in whole or part to other bona fide parties. Advertising does not imply endorsement,agreement or approval of any opinions, statements or information provided by Space Media Network on any Web page published or hosted by Space Media Network. Privacy Statement