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Stardust Status Report

August 2, 2002

There was one Deep Space Network tracking pass, and a NSP (Network Simplication Project) track reported last week. All subsystems are performing normally. Analysis of the data from last week indicated that the NSP test of the radiometric and telemetry data was very successful.

Commands to deploy the aerogel grid were tested in the Spacecraft Test Laboratory on July 25th. These commands also move the spacecraft to the new interstellar collection position. As the commands simulated the spacecraft moving to the new position, an attitude controller fault was detected. This made the simulated spacecraft enter a safe mode. Analysis revealed that a configuration file providing the new position was corrupted. A new configuration file was built and the test repeated without any errors.

Since the corrupted file was not understood until after a regularly scheduled track, the command files were not sent to the spacecraft at the time originally planned. An additional communications pass is scheduled, and the command files will be transmitted to the spacecraft.

For more information on the Stardust mission - the first ever comet sample return mission - please visit the Stardust home page:

Last Updated: November 26, 2003
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