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No. 3 - Initial Commissioning Activities

No. 3 - Initial Commissioning Activities

SummaryIn the reporting period the Rosetta control at ESOC has been moved to the Dedicated Control Room, ground coverage has been reduced to a single ground station (New Norcia, covering about 12 hours per day) and spacecraft and payload commissioning activities have begun.

All planned activities were successfully completed, including commissioning of the X-band equipment, activation of the fourth reaction wheel, calibration solar array flexible modes and sun sensor misalignment, testing of the Star Trackers in the nominal cruise attitude (+X sun pointing).

The first three instruments (Cosima, Consert and Osiris) were activated and their first slot of commissioning activities successfully completed. The first payload appendage (Consert antenna) was deployed.

The spacecraft is kept in the "tilted" attitude achieved during LEOP and slewed to +X sun pointing only when payload operations require it. This is to keep the High Gain Antenna mechanism cooler following the unexpected high temperature measured in LEOP. This new attitude has no immediate impact on operations, except that it imposes a higher than planned number of attitude slews and consequently of reaction wheels off-loading cycles.

The table below shows a chronology of the main activities in the reporting period:

    Mission Day



    Main Activity


    05/06.03.04 65/66 Reaction wheel friction test


    06/07.03.04 66/67 X-band commissioning; Transponder ranging delay test


    07/08.03.04 67/68 COSIMA commissioning


    08/09.03.04 68/69 Star Trackers test in +X Sun pointing


    09/10.03.04 69/70 Solar Array flexible modes; SAS misalignment calibration


    10/11.03.04 70/71 CONSERT antenna deployment and commissioning


    11/12.03.04 71/72 OSIRIS commissioning

At the end of the last New Norcia pass in the reporting period (DOY 072, 09:30) Rosetta was at 3.2 million km from the Earth. The return signal travel time was 21.6 seconds.

Last Update: 1 September 2019
10-Aug-2022 11:49 UT

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