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Cassini Update
Cassini Update
11 Aug 2004
(Source: Jet Propulsion Laboratory)

Cassini Significant Events for 08/05/04 - 08/11/04

The most recent spacecraft telemetry was acquired from the Goldstone tracking station on Wednesday, August 11. 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 http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov/operations/present-position.cfm .

Science activities this week included continuation of the Magnetospheric and Plasma Science (MAPS) campaign to study the influence of the solar wind on Saturn's aurora, and Optical Remote Sensing (ORS) observations of Saturn's south pole and aurora. Specific instrument activities included Ultraviolet Imaging Spectrograph (UVIS) and Magnetospheric Imaging Instrument (MIMI) observations of Saturn's magnetosphere, and the Visual and Infrared Mapping Spectrometer (VIMS) and Imaging Science Subsystem (ISS) obtained global mosaics as well as mosaics and movies of the rings and Saturn's south pole. The Composite Infrared Spectrometer (CIRS) searched for new stratospheric hydrocarbons, measured oxygen compounds in the stratosphere as a function of latitude to determine if the rings are the source, and performed long integrations to determine the composition of Saturn's atmosphere at different altitudes.

Additional activities included spin rate adjustments for the reaction wheels and the loading of Ion and Neutral Mass Spectrometer instrument expanded block files to the SSR.

The subject of this week's science talk for the flight team was VIMS and ISS science results for Phoebe.

Preparations are underway for support of orbit trim maneuver (OTM) #2, the periapsis raise maneuver. A maneuver preparation meeting was held, and commands were prepared for the opening of latch valves and to update the main engine thrust value.

The Science Operations Plan (SOP) update process is now complete for S05. A handoff package was presented to the Uplink Operations leads, and a kickoff meeting was held for the Science and Sequence Update Process (SSUP). The S06 SOP Update Science Adaptation Panel (SAP) meeting scheduled for last week was canceled, as there were no significant DSN changes from the plan.

Preliminary Port#2 for SOP Implementation of S33/S34 and preliminary port #1 for S35/S36 occurred this week. The files were merged and reports delivered identifying the required fixes. Official port#2 - the final port - for S33/S34 also occurred this past week. The final files are in the process of being merged prior to delivery to ACS for end-to-end pointing analysis.

Sequence development activities continued this week for both S04 and S05. The Preliminary Waiver Disposition Meeting for S04 was cancelled as there were no new waivers to disposition, and the S05 sub-sequences were placed in the program file repository for instrument teams to populate and return to the sequence lead in two weeks.

In the last week, 677 ISS images and 38 VIMS cubes arrived and were distributed. So far since Approach Science began, 16573 ISS images and 4652 VIMS cubes have been returned.

The Multi Mission Image Processing Laboratory (MIPL) completed certification testing of the Solaris 9 upgrades authorized by the Project as a part of the MIPL D32 delivery. No issues were uncovered.

The Mission Sequence Subsystem (MSS) team completed implementation of CIMS 3.2. Testing is on-going with a delivery coordination meeting planned for mid August.

MSS also released prototypes of the new maneuver contingency blocks for testing by SCO. The blocks are planned for release in the MSS D10.3.2 patch delivery in early October. Finally, implementation and unit testing of the SSR Management Tool for D11 was completed. The software was released for user acceptance testing by Science Planning.

A Software Review/Certification Requirements delivery meeting was held for INMS flight software version 9.1 This delivery is in response to a co-add issue identified shortly after the delivery of V9.0 The change between V9.1 and V9.0 is ~5 commands which reset the co-add counter after each trigger. The software was accepted for operational use with one follow-up action assigned. Uplink is planned for September 1.

A picture of Titan's "double haze" was Astronomy Picture of the Day on August 10.

The Discovery Channel took an in-depth look at NASA's mission to Saturn with CASSINI: RENDEZVOUS WITH THE RINGED PLANET, a one hour special which aired several times this week.

For the most recent Cassini press releases and images go to http://saturn.jpl.nasa.gov.

The Cassini-Huygens mission 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, manages the Cassini-Huygens mission for NASA's Science Mission Directorate, Washington, D.C. JPL designed, developed and assembled the Cassini orbiter.

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Last Updated: 13 Aug 2004