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STARDUST Status Report

November 12, 1999

The STARDUST spacecraft continues to perform normally in cruise. Minimal housekeeping activities were performed by the Flight Team at Lockheed Martin Astronautics (LMA). Some of the planned Deep Space Network communications sessions with STARDUST were released for use by the Mars Polar Lander project. The Flight Team experienced its first event where a command was not successfully received by the spacecraft. A minor Flight Software patch was not received by the spacecraft with the spacecraft notifying the LMA team of this occurrence. The command will be sent again next week during the next planned communication session.

A meeting was held at the University of Chicago to determine which test and operational modes the Dust Flux Monitor Instrument (DFMI) will be used. The DFMI will be tested in about 6 months in its comet encounter mode and then used in this mode during Earth gravity assist flyby as well as at Comet Wild 2. An additional test may be made to study another operational mode to be implemented at Comet Wild 2 where DFMI would be powered on for short periods of time to provide additional dust information.

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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