Stardust Status Report
March 8, 2002
There were two Deep Space Network (DSN) tracking passes during the
the past week and all subsystems are normal. Stardust is currently
2.70 AU from the Sun.
The battery's charge state at the end of the last four-hour pass
was 93.4 percent. In the unlikely event the charge state dipped to
80 percent, the spacecraft would enter safe mode. The power
subsystem engineers continue to monitor the predicted power state.
They will raise the limit for entering safe mode before a sequence
is uploaded that changes all passes to less than 2 hours.
The spacecraft's telecommunications configuration produces ranging
points that help the determine Stardust's trajectory through deep
space, using the distance between Deep Space Network and the
spacecraft. The configuration time was recently halved from 20
minutes to only ten minutes, which still gives many ranging points
per pass and the data quality remains good, at better than 3
meters per ranging point.
For more information on the Stardust mission - the first ever
comet sample return mission - please visit the Stardust home page: