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No. 18 - Preparation for Venus Approach

No. 18 - Preparation for Venus Approach

Report for period 03 March to 09 March 2006With the reporting period all calibration, science and maintenance activities of the instruments have been completed and focus is now on the Venus approach phase. These included the last MAG and ASPERA science acquisitions and a USO drift test.

On DoY 065 a dress rehearsal of the ground station operations to be done during the capture manoeuvre has been conducted in collaboration with the DSN station in Madrid achieving most of the planned results.

The DDOR campaign with DSN and ESA stations is now entering in its crucial phase. Additional proficiency passes are taken with DSN stations.

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

MET (Day)

Date

DOY

Main Activity

115

03/03/06

062

-X face Sun exposure

116

04/03/06

063

-X face Sun exposure

117

05/03/06

064

ASPERA Science and MAG switch OFF
DSN Goldstone proficiency pass

118

06/03/06

065

VOI Dress Rehearsal with DSn Madrid

119

07/03/06

066

SC Monitoring
USO Drift test over New Norcia

120

08/03/06

067

AOCS/DMS software update

121

09/03/06

068

SC Monitoring
DSN Madrid Proficiency pass

At the end of the last Cebreros pass in the reporting period (DOY 068, 13:00) Venus Express was 73 million km from the Earth, 106.3 million km from the Sun, and 12.4 million km from Venus. The one-way signal travel time was 244 seconds.

Payload Activities

ASPERA
The instrument is off. The last science acquisition has been performed on DoY 064.

MAG
The instrument has been switched OFF on DOY 064.

PFS
The instrument is off.

SPICAV
The instrument is off.

VeRA
The USO is kept powered but muted. On DOY 067 the USO has been unmuted and a drift test conducted.

VIRTIS
The instrument is off.

VMC
The instrument is off.

Future Milestones

The spacecraft is now configured for the Venus approach phase and activities will focus only to this.

The intense navigation campaign will enter now a period of maximum activity in order to have an extremely precise assessment of the spacecraft trajectory versus its target point at the planet.

Last Update: 1 September 2019
30-Nov-2021 18:13 UT

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