Status Report

ESA Venus Express Status Report No. 50 – Start of Conjunction Operations

By SpaceRef Editor
October 30, 2006
Filed under , , ,

24 Oct 2006 09:03

Report for Period 15 October to 21 October 2006

During the reporting period the mission operations have been conducted according to the plan. The spacecraft has been configured for conjuntion operations during the solar conjunction period, which is planned to end on 9 November 2006. During this period the payload is switched off.

Some uplink problems from Cebreros related to the X-Band up converter were encountered throughout the reporting period. Spacecraft operations were performed according to plan.

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

MET (Day) Date DOY VPER# Main Activity
341 15/10/06 288 177 Routine science operations
Payloads OFF
TCM (out of pass)
342 16/10/06 289 178 Configuration for Conjunction operations
Service 12 TT&C switch over
343 17/10/06 290 179 Reconfiguration to nominal Tx chain
TM bit rate change to 298 bps
TC bit rate change to 250 bps
344 18/10/06 291 180 Conjunction operations
345 19/10/06 292 181 Conjunction operations
346 20/10/06 293 182 Conjunction operations
Maximized tracking time for orbit determination
347 21/10/06 294 183 Conjunction operations

At the end of the last Cebreros pass in the reporting period (DOY 294, 16:00z) Venus Express was orbiting Venus at 256 million km from the Earth. The one-way signal travel time was 855 seconds.

Payload Activities

The instrument is OFF throughout the conjunction period.

The instrument is OFF throughout the conjunction period.

The instrument is OFF and remains inactive.

The instrument is OFF throughout the conjunction period.

The USO is nominally powered but muted. Solar Corona Observations using DSN 70m station in Canberra were performed on DoY 290, 291, 292, 293, 294.

The instrument is OFF throughout the conjunction period and the release of VIRTIS related commands from the MTL is disabled until actions to prevent further safe modes have been taken.

The instrument is OFF throughout the conjunction period.

Mission Planning

Short Term Planning
Operations planning for the conjunction period STP24, 25, 26, 27 have been completed successfully in the previous reporting period. DSN key file for Solar Corona observations in STP25 has been produced and sent to DSN.

Medium Term Planning
MTP09 was fully processed and a report generated.

Long Term Planning
Cebreros Maintenance windows for 2007 were negotiated and scheduled in station allocation file.

VSOC should provide to VMOC Radio Science New Norcia requirements for October to December 2007.

Future Milestones

The centre of conjunction will occur at a minimum Sun-Earth-Probe angle of 0.953° on 28 October 2006 (DoY301).

Conjunction exit is planned for 9 November 2006 (DoY313).

SpaceRef staff editor.