Status Report

Cassini Significant Events for 08/01/02 – 08/07/02

By SpaceRef Editor
August 9, 2002
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The most recent spacecraft telemetry was acquired from the Goldstone
tracking station on Tuesday, August 6. The Cassini spacecraft is in an
excellent state of health and is operating normally. Information on the
present position and speed of the Cassini spacecraft may be found on the
"Present Position" web page located at .

On board activities this week included an autonomous Solid State
Recorder memory load partition repair, clearing of the ACS high water
marks, calibrations of the Radio and Plasma Wave Science High Frequency
Receiver, and RADAR periodic instrument maintenance.

Science Planning reported completion of the third and final input port
products for Science Operations Plan development of the S09/S10 tour
sequences. The sequences will be completed in two weeks. In addition,
a kick-off meeting was held for the Science Planning Team process for

The Navigation Team has analyzed radiometric data gathered during the
solar conjunction that has been conditioned by a technique developed by
the Cassini Radio Science Team. The results are very positive.
Typically, media noise during solar conjunction corrupts the ranging and
Doppler data to such an extent that the data sets are unusable. However,
by using the Ka band signal received during the recent solar conjunction
experiment, members of the Radio Science Team were able to remove the
media effects from the X-band signal with remarkable success. This
capability will have little effect on Cassini’s interplanetary
navigation, but could be a significant help for orbit estimation during
the tour phase.

Topics at this week’s Mission Planning Forum included a presentation by
the Navigation team of their findings on the impact of moving Orbit Trim
Maneuver -11, a deterministic maneuver near Saturn periapsis, to
accommodate Satellite Orbiter Science Team science, and the
possibilities for conducting a Titan dress rehearsal for the RADAR
instrument prior to Saturn Orbit Insertion.

Members of the Uplink Operations Team traveled to the University of
Arizona to give a demonstration of the Science Opportunity Analyzer tool
to Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) instrument
personnel. VIMS has volunteered to do an evaluation of the tool to
assist in determining what additional resources should be invested in
further development.

The Spacecraft Office held a Monthly Management Review of CDS and ACS
flight software, SOI and probe relay critical sequence development, and
the Integrated Test Laboratory. These activities are on schedule and
have no significant problems.

Several Cassini teams and offices supported the NASA Quarterly review on
Monday, August 5.

Cassini Formal Education, a part of Cassini’s Outreach program,
conducted a workshop designed to build two Reading and Language Arts
units focusing on Saturn and the Cassini Mission. The workshop involved
six elementary school teachers, the Bay Area Writing Project, Project
FIRST, JPL, and the Caltech Pre-College Science Initiative. Continued
engagement with the K-4 community has been made more difficult by the
imposition of standardized testing in language. Pressure is being
exerted on teachers to eliminate the teaching of science in K-4 in favor
of more time for language instruction. The current materials that
teachers are given from publishers deal mostly with fiction based
reading and writing. Non-fiction, expository reading and writing using
the science from the Cassini mission will help fill this curricular gap.

Cassini is a cooperative project of NASA, the European Space Agency and
the Italian Space Agency. The Jet Propulsion Laboratory, a division of
the California Institute of Technology in Pasadena, Calif., manages the
Cassini mission for NASA’s Office of Space Science, Washington, D.C.

SpaceRef staff editor.