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Stardust Status Report

September 20, 2002

All of Stardust's subsystems are performing normally while collection of interstellar particles continues. The spacecraft had one period of radio contact through JPL's Deep Space Network this week.

The spacecraft has not finished transmitting a set of calibration images taken by the navigation camera on September 3. More than half of the images have reached the ground. As reported last week, the images show signs of contamination on the camera's light-sensing electronic surface -- the charge-coupled device. The contamination is less than on previous occasions. The camera is still usable in its current condition, but heaters will likely be turned on to remove the contamination. On a positive note, an image through the periscope showed improvement from previous images.

An updated version of nucleus-tracking software ran successfully in Spacecraft Test Laboratory this week.

The review board conducting a critical event readiness review on September 16 gave the Stardust team a positive response.

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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