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




Subscribe free to our newsletters via your




















Stardust Responds On First Command From Earth

illustration only
by Allan Cheuvront
Stardust Flight Director
Pasadena CA (JPL) Feb 07, 2007
It has been nearly a year since Stardust successfully released the capsule that returned the Wild 2 dust particles to earth and sent its last signal before being placed in a hibernation state. That situation changed when the Spacecraft Team (SCT) recently radiated commands to have STARDUST resume communications in order to determine the spacecraft's health for a follow-on mission to the comet Tempel 1.

As usual, the reliable spacecraft responded to our commands and the signal was received at the expected time. There was concern that a large solar flare last December could have placed the spacecraft in an unknown state.

The first telemetry indicated a processor reboot had occurred but the spacecraft's subsystems were in excellent condition. After restoring communication, the remainder of the Deep Space Network (DSN) pass was used to obtain the history data for the last year.

After saying "bon voyage" on January 29, 2006, the spacecraft passed through its perihelion (0.92 AU), the closest approach to the sun for the spacecraft, and made it safely through.

On July 10, 2006, a spontaneous reboot of the processor occurred. The cause of the reboot is unknown but was probably due to solar/space interference. The spacecraft returned itself to its safe mode state and continued

The spacecraft returned itself to its safe mode state and continued cruising. On December 7, 2006, another large solar flare created problems for the Star Camera.

After struggling for several hours to obtain good star images, an attitude control error caused the spacecraft to re-enter safe mode. Once again the spacecraft returned to its nominal safe mode state where it remained until contacted last Monday.

Our second DSN pass was used to clear the reboot counters, exit safe mode and ready the spacecraft for the instrument checkout scheduled. We will check out the health of the instrument suite including, Dust Flux Monitor (DFM), Cometary Interstellar Dust Analyzer (CIDA) and Navigation Camera (NAVCAM).

The playback of the science instruments will take the remaining DSN passes through early February. After all the recorded data has been received on the ground we will again command the spacecraft into its safe mode or hibernation state. The spacecraft will remain in hibernation until the final decision is made concerning the Stardust-NExT follow-on mission.

The Stardust-NExT (New Exploration of Tempel) mission would encounter the comet Tempel 1 in 2011 and image the crater made by the Deep Impact mission. The program is currently developing a Concept Study Report that provides additional information about the proposed follow-on mission. The final decision is expected in the May/June timeframe.

Related Links
Stardust at JPL



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


High-Energy Relic Wind Reveals Past Behavior Of Dead Stars
Palo Alto CA (SPX) Feb 07, 2007
A team of astronomers from France and South Africa, members of the H. E.S.S. (the High Energy Stereoscopic System) multi-national collaboration, has announced the first catalog of a new type of gamma-ray source, a dozen clouds of "relic" radiation from dead stars that reveal information about the energetic past of these celestial objects.







  • The Planetary Society Calls For Restoration Of Funds For NASA Science In 2008 Budget Request
  • A Spaceship For Sale On Ebay May Win Half A Million Dollars
  • US Astronaut Faces Attempted Murder Charge In Love Triangle Case
  • NASA Sets Out Tough Training To Reach For The Stars

  • Spirit Examines Churned-Up Martian Soil
  • Mars Express Camera Now In Its Third Year
  • Looking For Microbial Martians
  • Opportunity Making Its Way To Final Position On Cape Desire

  • Sea Launch Operations To Be Resumed Despite Liftoff Failure
  • JOULE II Launches With Success At Poker Flat
  • SpaceWorks Engineering Releases Study On Emerging Commercial Transport Services To ISS
  • Russia To Stop Spacecraft Launches From Far East In 2007

  • Google Earth To Blur Key India Sites
  • GeoEye Makes Final Debt Payment For The Purchase Of Space Imaging
  • Canada And US Launch Satellite Mapping Project Of North America
  • Brazilian Satellite Undergoes Environmental Tests

  • One Year Down, Eight to Go, On The Road to Pluto
  • NASA Spacecraft En Route To Pluto Prepares For Jupiter Encounter
  • Jupiter Encounter Begins For New Horizons Spacecraft On Route To Pluto
  • New Horizons in 2007

  • Universe Contains More Calcium Than Expected
  • Stardust Responds On First Command From Earth
  • High-Energy Relic Wind Reveals Past Behavior Of Dead Stars
  • In Search Of Hot Stuff Like Saturn

  • NASA Moon-Impactor Mission Passes Major Review
  • 181 Things To Do On The Moon
  • How SMART-1 Has Made European Space Exploration Smarter
  • The Moon Is A Harsh Witness

  • GPS Upgrade Will Require Complicated Choreography
  • China Puts New Navigation Satellite Into Orbit
  • Port Of Rotterdam To Use SAVI Networks Savitrak For Cargo Security And Management Service
  • GMV Signs Galileo Contracts Worth Over 40 Million Euros

  • The content herein, unless otherwise known to be public domain, are Copyright 1995-2006 - SpaceDaily.AFP and UPI Wire Stories are copyright Agence France-Presse and United Press International. ESA PortalReports are copyright European Space Agency. All NASA sourced material is public domain. Additionalcopyrights 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 SpaceDaily on any Web page published or hosted by SpaceDaily. Privacy Statement