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No. 63 - Formal Start of Mars Swingby Phase

No. 63 - Formal Start of Mars Swingby Phase

Report for Period 28 July to 18 August 2006The reporting period covers three weeks of active cruise for the Rosetta spacecraft. During this period, telemetry generated during Passive Cruise period was dumped to ground, and some maintenance activities were performed on on-board control procedures (OBCP) and mass memory files.

The instruments remained off during the reporting period, except for SREM which was kept active in the background for the entire period.

A total of 4 New Norcia (NNO) passes of 8.3 hours commanding were taken during the reporting period. TM/TC links with the Operations Control Centre have been established for all NNO passes. In addition, two proficiency tracks and two Delta-DOR test tracks were scheduled with DSN.

Date DOY

Main Activity

885 01.08.06 213 Monitor pass - Near Sun Hibernation Mode Telemetry Dumps
886 02.08.06 214 Monitor pass - Near Sun Hibernation Mode Telemetry Dumps
893 09.08.06 221 Monitor pass - OBCP Maintenance,
Attitude guidance updated prior to AOS
900 16.08.06 228 Monitor pass - SSMM Files Maintenance

At the end of the reporting period (DOY 230) Rosetta was at 294.4 million km from Earth (1.97 AU; one-way signal travel time was 15 minutes 46 seconds). The distance to the Sun was 162.8 million km (1.09 AU).

Spacecraft Status


The thermal behaviour of the spacecraft is nominal and stable. It remains configured for Active Near Sun cruise (ACM1 since DOY 207/2006).

The temperature of the tanks is being closely monitored to ensure balanced temperatures for the upcoming Deep Space Manoeuvre at the end of September. At the end of the reporting period, the NTO and MMH tank temperatures were both very close to 39 °C, leading to tank pressures of 16.56 bar for the NTO tank and 16.26 bar for the MMH tank.


The dump of the RPC science data generated during the observation of comet Honda between DOY 185 and 189 was completed on-ground on DOY 215.

SREM remains active in the background for radiation monitoring with accumulation parameters configured for active cruise.

Future Milestones

The Mars Swingby Phase formally started on 28 July. The phase includes two Deep Space Manoeuvres in September 2006 and April 2007, while the actual swingby will take place on 25 February 2007.

Upcoming short-term operations include a payload passive checkout (PC3) and two thermal characterisations in August/September and the first payload Active Checkout (PC4) in November/December.

Last Update: 1 September 2019
24-Feb-2024 00:48 UT

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