ESA Venus Express Status Report - November 2007

Status Report From: ESA Venus Express Mission
Posted: Wednesday, November 21, 2007


19 Nov 2007 10:14

An anomaly in the solar array drive circuitry, already known on Mars Express, was detected on Venus Express for the first time on 23 August 2007. Within 24 hours the error happened twice. This resulted in a three day stop of all science operations. It was decided to implement the Mars Express patch to solve the problem. Following the trigger of the same event for the Y wing on 18 September, the patch was also enabled for that wing. Since then S/C operations have been performed nominally.

An anomaly has been reported for the VIRTIS-H and later also VIRTIS–M cryo-cooler motor current. Some dedicated tests were performed and it was decided to introduce a new operational mode for these coolers, which will induce less stress on the engine. In the mean time all VIRTIS-H (and later also all VIRTIS-M) observations had to be cancelled. In future it is intended that the VIRTIS observations focus on the most important science goals to minimize the load on the coolers.

Pending an updated delivery of the SPICAV and MAG data the peer review process of the initial Venus Express science data products will be initiated. The first data sets are expected to be released to the wide scientific community in January 2008.

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